Saturday, November 21, 2009

Love, Part 4

If you haven't noticed, I have been thinking a lot about "love." I think that there are a lot of good questions about love to ask regarding discipleship. At what point do we rest in contentment, not striving to always "do," but relax and let others come around us? That has been one great lesson through all of this... humility to take in love. But that love is not static. We are "blessed to be a blessing..."
I think that Jake is coming more to terms with the long-term-ness of all of this. I think that the subsiding of the back pain really helped improve his demeanor. Yes he is still depressed... we all are... I myself do not see yet see a near end to what I am coming to grips with as a bleak/dark period in my own life... but there is a rest, a contentment, a resolve to go through what he must, to endure. In that there is joy... not a "happy" joy, but more of a "resolved, ruthless" joy.

If you can, read John 15-16... it will put what I have to say in more context. All throughout John, Jesus seems to be talking in abstract terms about his commandments for us, how he is connected to the Father and has authority, the reasons that we should be obedient, etc... but finally in 15:12, he says:

This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lays down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what the Master is doing... These things I command you, so that you will love one another.

Love is the center of a dynamic cycle. We are called to follow Christ's commandments... following his commandments is showing our love to him... but the very central commandment that he calls us to is to love one another, as he loved us! Love is the command. It is also the means to following that command... and it is all centered around Christ, around the example he gave, around the scandal involved in a holy, perfect God becoming unholy and imperfect because he loves us. This is the paradox of the incarnation.

The reason I say all this is because I pray that this cycle be evident in the lives of my family members through this ordeal... that we would relax and take in love when needed, but that we would also be proactive in this awesome experience to share love! Looking at the way that this blog/facebook has connected so many people - just look at what it has done for people like Jessica Huse and Andrew Sinclair. It has become a way to connect more people to more stories. My brothers and sisters, this is the Kingdom of God at work. This is the Church.
And looking at how much Jacob will grow through this. I can only pray and dream about what God has in store for him in the future.

So, I have come to derive hope from two sources. One from the things said above. The other, that has recently become more important to me, is the promise we have in Christ of future restoration. That one day we get to follow in his action of Resurrection. John 16:33 -

I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.

Do you believe this? Do you trust this Word? If you truly do... not just if you mentally agree with these statements... but if you truly believe... then you live in a different world, and you need to get ready for transformation to happen. Belief is not a mental process... it is a holistic, real-life endeavor of living in a way that is backwards to the ways of our societal structures. No one has it perfect... which is why we trust and submit. I see Jacob, so vulnerable, so submissive, so humiliated... and in him I see the resurrected Son of God.

With you all in prayer,

Rob (Jake's brother)

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