So, here’s what happened. In my devotions this week I read the story of Mary Magdalene and other women finding the empty tomb, when Jesus rose from the dead (John 20:11-18). After the others left, Mary stayed and was crying in the garden. The gardener came up and asked Mary why she was crying. Mary told him someone had taken her Lord. Then the gardener -- who was Jesus but Mary had not recognized him -- said, “Mary.” And Mary was full of joy.
I was captivated by the story. I kept imagining Jesus’ eyes and voice full of love. At church I shared it as our devotion before beginning a meeting. We read the story, then talked about ways we know God loves us. One person said that it was sometimes hard to feel loved because they had been brought up with the church saying more about what things you should do as a good Christian, and how full of sin we are, and less about how much God loves us. We discussed why we feel that way. We know we don’t deserve God’s love, but he tells us over and over how much he loves us -- now, just as we are, not IF we do all the things.
So there I was, basking in the love of God, imagining him saying, “Mavis,” with his eyes and voice full of love. My heart felt soft and warm. I could just see Jesus looking at me in love, the way a mother looks at her sleeping baby. ... And about an hour later, I said a mean, unkind thing to a fellow member at the meeting. Bam. So full of love. And boom. Blew it. Hurt someone. Messed up. I apologized and the person graciously forgave me.
Thinking of it later, it reminded me of Peter, and the way he told Jesus, “Not me, I’ll never betray you!” and then soon after, he denied knowing Jesus -- quite vehemently -- three times. It’s guaranteed -- right? -- that we’re going to blow it. One way or another we’ll prove that we are not perfect, that we are not always kind and sweet, we will not do the right thing every time, we will not always show God’s love to others. Yet...God loves us. He loves you. Always and forever.
What can I pray for you?
love and blessings,
If you would like to send me specific prayer requests and are reading this as an email message, just reply. I will gladly pray with you. If you are reading this in my blog, email me at mavis at moonfamily.cc. I'll keep all communication confidential.