We have entered Holy Week, those days approaching our Easter or Pascha remembrance and celebration of the events that have become the foundation of our faith and belief in Christ. It is a somber time of reflection as we recall the written words depicting as best as mere words can the horror and excruciating pain suffered by our Lord on our behalf for the remediation of a sinful world. Even Hollywood with its special effects could never accurately capture in film the physical brutality of a suffering Christ.
It is so easy in this life with its trials and disappointments to lose sight of not only the heavy price paid, but the reason Christ endured our just punishment. Life sometimes is simply not fair, at least as we view fairness. We work hard but are still laid off or our position eliminated, we take care of our bodies but still receive the negative medical report, we give it our best but our relationships still end. The normal human response is to measure the obvious against the given standards of success and feel a sense of worthlessness as we recall a trail of failures. I know because I do this constantly. Do I measure up? Am I leaving anything of worth behind in my wake? Are people who come in contact with me left better or worse for the encounter? While self-examination can be a motivating tool, it can also cause great harm if our measurements aren’t true because of corrupt criteria. And to continue in our false sense of worthlessness is to completely diminish the work done by Christ on the cross on our behalf. And therein lies the error of this line of thought process.
It is in these times that we are compelled to recall those verses we have all heard and grown up with but failed to apply on personal levels. This is what Holy Scripture has to say about our worth and value in God’s eyes:
Matthew 10:29; Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them fall to the ground without the Father seeing it? But even the hairs of your head are numbered! You are of more value than many sparrows.
Isaiah 49:15; Can a woman forget her nursing child, that she would have no compassion for him? Yet these may forget but I will not forget you. See, I have engraved your name on the palms of my hands-you are continually on my mind.
We are a people of emotional responses and triggers; we love passionately; we grieve over painful losses; we fear uncertain situations. But the journey of faith can be easily hijacked by our emotions. In times of despair when all seems hopeless we have to hold fast to our knowledge of the written Word as our plumb line and not the false indicators of human response. We may or may not be moved by the verses above and others like them when we are at our lowest, but we have to hold them to be irrevocable truths that emotions can’t alter.
Our Lord would not have endured the cross for losers, failures, those deemed worthless. In fact the opposite is true. It was us who need hope, who need forgiveness and restoration that He is most compassionate toward and He proved it on that Good Friday as the world and all creation went dark while He took His last breath and temporarily surrendered to death. And it was all for love, a love we could never comprehend, and certainly never merit. Again, reflect of these undeniable truths:
Romans 8:35; Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation or distress, or persecution or famine, or nakedness or danger or sword?…For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels or demons, neither the present or future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
1 John 4:9; In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent His only Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
Ephesians 2:44; But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our sins, made us alive together with Christ.
The death of Christ once and forever tore and removed the veil that separated sinful man from a Holy perfect God in that we are now made perfect having our sin removed from us as far as the East is from the West, and we are encouraged to boldly approach a God as His children and siblings of his Holy Son. There is nothing we could ever achieve on earth, no title given, no award of prestige we could ever claim that has more value than being referred to as Children of God. While this designation should be grasped with humility and reverence, it should never be tarnished by the deceit of human feelings during trying times. He Who knew us before we were born died a horrible death so that we could be forever united with Him in a kingdom yet to come. He would not have done so had he shared the same appraisal of us that we accept as true.
Now available on Amazon Kindle