Through The Lens Of Love - City Church
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Through The Lens Of Love

In the Easter season, I find myself faced with the gravity of what Christ did on the cross. I want to be worthy to be called His.

 

Ephesians 4 says, “Walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called.”  In Philippians 1:27, it says, “Let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ.”  Colossians 1:10 reads similarly:  “Walk in a manner worthy of the Lord.”

 

When I read these verses, I can get disheartened. This is a high calling that can feel impossible to live up to. Paul penned these verses from prison.  Is it possible to walk worthy of the gospel if we are not suffering for it as Paul did?  Looking at the life of Jesus– He came. He suffered. He bled. He died.  He conquered the grave.  Can I truly walk in a way that will be worthy of all of that? Is God’s love and acceptance contingent on my worthiness? If so, is that achieved through what I do?

 

If anyone could be worthy and achieve salvation through works it would have been Paul.  In the midst of prison, Paul could have boasted and said, “Look what I am suffering for the gospel.  I’m walking worthy of the gospel.”  Imagine this boastful Paul in today’s day, posting on social media: “@allchristianseverywhere:  Got arrested while preaching the gospel. #chainsforJesus #Iamworthy #blessed”.

 

But Paul lays to rest any fear we might have about our own worthiness when he writes in Ephesians 2,  “But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved…. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.”

 

Even though I have known this scripture since I was a kid, my understanding of this kind of great love and grace was shallow until I had children of my own. There are moments where my children mess up, and they sense my disappointment in them.  But, no matter what they do, my love for them won’t be diminished.

 

From the time they were in my womb, I loved them. Nothing they did earned my love.  I will always see them through the lens of love because they are my children.  I forgive their mistakes before they even make them because they are my children.  What can I say?  I am biased!  Yet, how much greater is my Father’s grace and love than mine for my children?

 

 

As a mother sees her kids through the lens of love, so our Father sees us.  He is biased for us.  Romans 5:8 says,  “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

 

He chose to die for us, in the midst of our sin.  Before we chose Him, He chose us.  He knows we can’t help but sin, but he still chose to die for us.  When we continue to stumble and make the same egregious errors, He still chooses to see us through the lens of love.  He called us worthy of the cross.

I reflect back on the parent/child relationship. I see how fiercely I love my children, and know that my heavenly Father loves with a love greater than I can comprehend and far beyond what I am capable.

 

Psalm 103 tells us, How great is God’s love for all who worship him?  Greater than the distance between heaven and earth! How far has the Lord taken our sins from us.  Farther than the distance from east to west! Just as parents are kind to their children, the Lord is kind to all who worship him.”

 

We should want to walk in a manner worthy because we love Him.  But, as we try to walk in a way that is worthy of the Lord and His sacrifice, we must remember that God sees us through a lens of love and nothing we do can increase or diminish His great love for us.

 

-Rebecca Bigler