“As the Father has loved me, so I have loved you.”
Jesus, tell me, show me, how the Father loved you when he let you die an agonizing, cruel, brutal death and didn’t do a thing to stop it. How does that express his love? And you love me with that kind of love?
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John McCain tells the story of how one of his guards in the Vietnamese prison camp came to his cell every evening, risking his own life to loosen McCain’s bonds and make him a bit more comfortable for the night. Because of the language barrier, they couldn’t communicate. But one night the guard drew the sign of the cross on the dirt floor. How many other acts of selfless love have been evoked over the centuries by this sign of the cross?
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I think the Father didn’t make you die on a cross, Jesus, or order you to die that way. I think he permitted you to show your love for us by your willingly enduring the worst we could do to you and then continuing to love us. Jesus, teach me to love that way. Transform me into what you would have me be. Grant me the courage, the power, and the fortitude to become worthy of being called a Christian.
I read this several years ago
in Forward Day by Day. I think it connects
perfectly with the start of Lent.