Made for another world

"If I discover within myself a desire which no experience in the world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world." C. S. Lewis

Friday, April 19, 2013

What I learned about God's love from a Gay Stranger

The day I picked a young gay man up on the side of the road changed my life. After a half hour ride and an honest conversation I learned something about myself. I was holding on to more spiritual pride than I realized. I also learned something about God. His love can't be quantified and limited the way we as human's try.

The hunger that poured from this young man's lips caused my heart to twist uncomfortably in my chest. The days leading up to our meeting had prepared me to hear what God was trying to teach me. This young man, struggling with his identity and place in life, wasn't an object of pity, he wasn't disgusting, he wasn't an evil to be avoided.

He was the beloved.

That evening, as I processed the conversation we had had, my heart was gripped with the realization that God had brought me into this young man's path as a witness. I could sense the love God was pouring out over his wounded life, the way he was meeting him, calling out to him. God hadn't introduced me to him to set him straight or hone my apologetic skills. God wanted me to stand in wonder at his undaunted love for all of humanity, each person, each one.

I have never been the same since meeting the stranger. He's not a stranger anymore though, I consider him a friend. 

This year I've stood in hurricane force winds, arms and mouth flung open wide in the face of our Father's current of mercy. How can I be the religious zealot, the closet pharisee I was in the past with the display of mercy God has put on in front of my eyes. Or maybe it's that he opened my eyes to the merciful dance he has always been spinning. 

Either way, I can't get my thirst quenched. I want more. I dream bigger, risk more, wrestle my own pride more viciously. 

As the mercy washes over me I'm beginning to lose my appetite for arguing over agenda's and groups of people, conditions and ideologies. A conversation with a stranger changed my perspective, I refuse to point fingers anymore. I prefer to deal in the economy of hearts, and mercy, and love, and who am I. 

I've struggled with spiritual pride my whole life. Only recently have I come to realize that at the core pride is a desire to be worshiped. Considering that reality it seems absurd  that I point out the obvious brokenness and sin of other people, of the insanity of the whole world. That's an argument no one can win.

I love holiness. I believe we were created for order, right perspective, pure relationships, and an understanding of God's sole possession of truth. I believe we were created to live holy lives, drawing others to God. My view of holiness hasn't changed, my view of who is responsible for my holiness has. The best way to display holiness is through serving, not arguing, condemning, or comparing anyone's life to our own.

God's economy of love, this season of mercy, his bending in grace is beyond what I can fathom. But one thing I've learned is not to get in his way. He will have mercy on whom he chooses and extend blessing for generations. Judgement rests with him alone. I can only stand back in wonder!

Some days the world seems mad. In Jesus face I find the answer to the madness. Wherever I can, whenever I can I choose to live in the answer. Mercy for me and mercy for you.

This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. John 3:16-17 The Message

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