“Noooo! I don’t want to!”
At four years old, she’s already fiercely independent. At four years old, my foster daughter has already known more loss, disappointment, and pain than my four decades of adulthood. So when her eyes glare at me with laser-sharp focus from under a furrowed brow, and a tantrum of tears meant to test my resolve (and my love), I think of Jesus.
There are no words. Out of all the books I’ve read and Easter Sunday sermons I’ve heard, overflowing with comforting wisdom, prophetic prose, and life lessons, there are still no words adequate, big enough, deep enough to contain and explain the greatness of God. It makes sense, though. I mean, isn’t that how love works?
When we genuinely love others, it’s impossible to hide it or even withhold it. There’s no denying it. There’s no mystery; it’s not a secret. Like a glorious light bursting through cracks in the darkness, authentic love shines through–no matter what. The Bible calls us to make love a sport, a competition, to outdo the other in giving more than we want for ourselves–without selfish motivation (Romans 12:10, Philippians 2:4).
The Olympic champion of this sacrificial love is none other than King Jesus. He willingly walked to the cross on Calvary, he lived in truth and breathed life into everyone he encountered. A walking, living, breathing manifestation of love. But, why even bother when most people at that time were telling him no?
As I prayerfully considered whether to fulfill a longtime goal of motherhood by taking on a challenging child, a dear friend offered an amazing answer.
“Love is a real healer, ” she said. “You can love a child out of crisis.”
Jesus could see our crisis coming. He saw the world’s peril and strife on the horizon. He saw the trials headed our way. He knew his children would need a rescue (sometimes from themselves). He knew someday they would need a healer. He was physically removed from the cross, but like a faithful father, He is risen and still holding his post today.
Thousands of years later, the Real Healer is calling us to love as He loved us (John 15:12) because there’s still more work to do. This Easter Sunday, are you a representation of His love? The world needs believers, not bench warmers. There are hearts that need healing, physical health needs healing, finances need healing, workplaces need healing, relationships need healing, marriages need healing, politics need healing, our leaders need healing, and even some churches need healing. In every corner and crack in your heart, honor His sacrifice and be a walking, living, breathing manifestation of His love.