Sunday, February 4, 2018

The Miracle is that "Something is Different" in Our Lives

If we are committed Christians, we know that the love of Jesus is everything. This love has touched our lives, and we know that its power is nothing short of miraculous.

We know that it is wonderful. It is transforming. We know that he wants to share this love with every human person.

And we are his witnesses.

Surely, we want to be on fire with this love so that it can shine through. We want the change in our lives to show that miracles are possible.

Right?  "...Uh...yeah, sure.... I mean, yes, of course. Of course! Hallelujah!" how's that "witness" going?

Maybe not so well, if we're honest about it. If we have known the love of God himself in the embrace of Christ, why do we keep forgetting and going back to selfishness, egoism, distraction, and strife?

Every day we fail. Even those who aim the highest find that they fall short again and again. Should this be a cause for discouragement?

Certainly not.

It should be cause for humility, for prayer, for turning and returning to the sources of grace, the places where Jesus "touches" us. Our faith makes especially clear the fragility of our humanity, our immense poverty, our utter dependence on God for everything.

Still, we know that God is good and merciful, and that he has embraced our lives. We must not give up, but on the contrary cling ever more fully to him.

Knowing the depths of God's love and our own weakness, we have all the more reason to look upon the struggles of every human person with compassion. Knowing God's generosity and our own vulnerability, we have every reason to forgive others when they hurt us.

We cannot be complacent. We must always strive to say "yes" to the love God pours out on our lives, to beg for his love to change us, to turn us into lovers, to show the wonder of his beauty through us.

The "miracle" that people can discover when they look at our witness is not that we're "totally perfect" human beings. We're not even remotely closeand we don't need to hide that fact or pretend that's what we claim to be.

The miracle is not that everything is different in our lives, or that we have become totally coherent—that we have become overnight "instant saints."

Rather, if we are faithful, what people will begin to see is that in the midst of all our real messy flawed human lives, something is different— there is Something Else that gives us hope, "Something"(SomeONE) for whom we live....

Or at least they might see that we try to live for the One who loves us, that we desire it, we yearn for it and beg for it... because he is drawing us to himself.

I look at myself and it's clear that I'm so obviously mediocre, vain, and lazy that if there is any spark of that difference—that newness of life—in me (or even the desire for it) there must be Another at work in me.

I pray to be open to his work, to stay with him, to walk with him, and then in all the craziness of my life something new begins to happen. If as Christians we share the journey of our lives honestly and humbly, the light of the miraculous love that is changing us will shine and awaken hope in the hearts of others.