Consider Him.

((from Natalie))

That Creator God, He sure set an impossible standard. I’m incapable of living up to it. I know I’ll never be blameless, sinless, unflawed. I certainly have chased it before, pacing around in pursuit of perfection. I’ve poured my hopes into things that fail…

All the while, His Cross stood there, high on a hill to beckon me there.

As we anticipate Easter, I feel my own imperfection, acutely. I feel the pull, like a crankshaft, reeling me towards the story lived by my Christ Jesus. I want my soul to lay at the foot of the cross and be washed by the Truth and light and love of my Savior. I feel so inarticulate (when it comes to conveying my heart as it surveys the Cross) that today I’ll borrow from music. There’s a song on refrain in my heart, it’s called “Sweetly Broken” by Jeremy Riddle:

To the Cross, I look, and to the Cross, I cling
Of it’s suffering, I do drink, of its work, I do sing
On it, my Savior, both bruised and crushed
Showed that God is love and God is just

At the Cross, You beckon me
You draw me gently to my knees
And I am lost for words, so lost in love
I’m sweetly broken, wholly surrendered
Yeah, yeah, oh Lord

What a priceless gift, undeserved life
Have I been given through Christ crucified
You’ve called me out of death
You’ve called me into life
And I was under Your wrath
Now, through the Cross, I’m reconciled

Ooh, and at the Cross, You beckon me
You draw me gently to my knees
And I am lost for words, so lost in love
I’m sweetly broken, wholly surrendered

Today, I am at a loss for words. I have hit the delete button, backspacing on my word choices, over and over. I’ve tried (and failed repeatedly) to pour language onto the song of my own soul. Jesus lives in refrain on my heart, because He was perfect and because He rose again, but especially because of the Cross. Today, there simply aren’t words enough to speak of all of His goodness.

“There are many other things that Jesus did. If every one of them were written down, I suppose the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written.” –John 21:25

Brothers and sisters, when you turn your heart towards the Cross, your story is a book to be added to the library of things Jesus did. Hope is hard my friends, but the Cross reminds you and I not to give up.  As our own stories are written, looking to Jesus can help us to not grow weary.

Because my ability to find words is failing today, I’ll again point you to those of another. Writer, Nancy Guthrie so clearly shares words that speak to the hope I carry because of Christ Jesus:

“When you feel sorry for yourself because your life is hard and you want the easy way out… consider Him… Consider the difficulty of His life of poverty, never having a home of His own, depending on the kindness of others. See the pain of rejection as those who welcomed Him later called for His crucifixion. Consider Him and do not lose heart.

When you feel forgotten by God and those you thought cared about you, when you long for the closeness of someone who cares… consider Him. Consider what it must have been like in those moments on the cross when His Father turned away and He was forsaken. Consider what it was like to be rejected and ridiculed by His own family and the people of His hometown. Consider Him and do not lose heart.

When you feel tired and want to give up… consider Him, Consider how He spent the whole night in prayer, agonizing over the path he was about to walk. See Him sweating drops of blood. Watch Him endure the trials and torture after a night of no sleep. Consider Him and do not grow weary.

When you feel abused and want to fight back… consider Him. Consider His humble responses to those who lied about Him and spit on Him, ridiculed Him, and beat Him.  Consider Him and do not grow weary.

When you feel fearful about the future and you want to find hope… consider Him, who for the joy set before Him endured the Cross. Whenever you are tempted to give up, look to the Cross and see the price Jesus paid so that He might call you His very own.”

Hopers, YOU are His. As we approach Easter, I look to the cross and feel my heart tugged ever closer. Won’t you meet me there?

“And the God of all grace, who called you to His eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will Himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast. To Him be the power for ever and ever. Amen.”
1 Peter 5:10-11

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