these are some thoughts that i had today after my first class:
i think i am learning tha tthe end result of all of these changes that God is making in me is not that i would become bitter or jaded. as God develops my sense of discernment and i learn to see right and wrong in my life, my college campus, the church, the point is not that i reject those things becuase i see wrong or sin in them. it's all about love right? i think the point in my newly developed heart of discernment is so i could be in love with the things that break my heart.
LOVE IT UNTIL IT LOVES YOU BACK
so many people get so bitter towards the hypocrisy on my college campus, but what would it look like if instead of turning my back on Bethel in judgement, if i embraced and loved on those people who claim one thing but live another way? i think bitterness, judgementalism, or escapism is just a cop-out, just as bad as being a hypocrite. i mean, all sins are equal before the throne of God right? more than hypocrisy, i am becoming disgusted by christians who abandon their brothers and sisters due to self-righteousness, judgement and superiority. it is not acceptable to claim Christ and reject our brothers and sisters. i have been so guilty of this sin in the past, but i so see the evidence of God speaking to me softly in this area. love. that's what it's about right? that's what i've been saying. it's so much easier to love the poor and the marginalized, becuase when we truly love our brothers and sisters in Christ, we are forced to face our own ugliness, our own filthy, broken souls. oh, that i would have the strength and courage to love the broken hypocrites around in me in this place, because i am nothing more than one of them. i hope that i will continue to be broken in this way. the destruction of my pride and self-righteousness. the destruction of my desire, and ultimately my very ability, to judge others. how can i go about desiring, yearning for community when i so quickly reject the very community that i live in? i am starting to see some of God's purpose in bringing me back to this place. to learn to truly love.
one of my professors showed us a video in class today of a pastor speaking on the crucifixion of Christ. it rocked me. his throught were that God's wrath was poured out on Christ as he hung on the cross. what is that even? throughout the old testament, i read about God's wrath and punishments and have often wondered why we do not experience that today. the answer is Jesus Christ. Jesus was not sweating blood in the garden before he was crucified because he was afraid of the physical pain of being crucified, the injustice of being sinless and on trial, or the embarassment of being before a crowd for unjust reasons. no, none of those things caused that kind of stress. Jesus sweat blood because he knew that God's wrath was about to be poured out on him. God's past wrath, his present wrath, and the biggest of all, the wrath, anger and fury for all of the sins yest to be committed against the law of God for all of the rest of history. what would it feel like to die for the future generation, to die for people that had not yet been created or made those bad decisions? this thought of God's wrath rocks everything i have learned about the crucifixion before. how we have cheapened Christ's sacrifice. Jesus' expereince was so much more than physical pain. this explains too why the martyrs of the first century endured horrific physical torture for the name of Christ, but Christ's sacrifice was the one that atoned for our sin. i don't understand what it would feel like to be one of mind with God but to still voluntarily bear the weight of God's wrath. what courage. what love. with this understanding, how could i ever again doubt that God loves me so much, so unconditionally?