The Cross of Jesus is the most inglorious event in all of mankind’s history yet is the only event that makes our Glory legitimate…

person lying on cart

Photo by HARSH KUSHWAHA

God spoke, “I looked, but there was no one to help; I was appalled, but there was no one to uphold; so my own arm brought me salvation, and my righteous wrath upheld me.” Isaiah 63:5

The theology (meaning study of…) of the Cross vs. The theology of Glory jumped out at me while reading again the book called The Gospel According to Job  by Mike Mason which I have been reading for over five years along with The Discipline of Disturbance  by Hud McWilliams, who has been my spiritual mentor for over twenty-nine years.

All of that to say it absolutely astounded me  when I realized that there is no glory in the Cross. The monumental indescribable event that took place on that cross was one of absolutely NO glory yet it is exactly that event on that cross that makes Glory for you and I a legitimate option through the obedience of Jesus to die on that cross. and be given by God the Father the Sovereign rule forever. It stirred me so that I could not eat or sleep.

The spirituality of the Cross and those of us who trust in The One who died up on it is that it seeks God and ONLY God and here is the kicker, the work on the cross of Jesus would accept NO GLORY!  There is no glory in sin. God himself is the significant value of the Cross!!! Jesus humbled himself  only seeking God’s will and then doing it.

Glory to God is useless if humans conjure it up in themselves. We see it all around us in the Church. A mega church boasting about their numbers of attendance. The church member who judges others who cannot seem to overcome their sin issues  but never  repenting of their own or the supposed Christian celebrities that millions follow on social media and accept their teachings because they are popular.

The Glory belongs to Jesus and Jesus alone, who’ s very essence is God,  yet on that cross he was a son, a man who had not sought ANY glory for himself only his Father’s.

“Never build your case for forgiveness on the idea that God is our Father and He will forgive us because he loves us. God forgives sin ONLY because of the death of Christ…anything that LESSENS the holiness of God through a false view of His love, contradicts the truth of God as REVEALED by Jesus Christ…”  Oswald Chambers

The lesson is that the Cross is for those who will walk by simple faith seeking no glory of our own. Oh that I might grasp this Truth today and everyday for one day my Faith will be made sight and the glory will be more than eternity can hold. Not mine but His.

“The Cross is foolishness to those who are perishing but to those who are being saved it is the power of God.”  1 Corinthians 1:18

 

Due to Bad Weather…

Photo by Magda Ehlers

So I am sitting in the Detroit airport waiting for a late flight, due to bad weather and a plane pulls up…everyone gradually looks around, they get up and walk to the observation window…low and behold a military escort marches out into the rainy, ice cold apron and then off the plane comes a casket and a family…all of us in the window stand reverently and then a young man in uniform salutes…some people put their hand over their heart as it dawns on each of us what we are witnessing..some begin to shed tears…this person who has served their country is coming home…there are no news cameras, no horns blowing…we don’t know their name or their family but all of us mourn…all of us are relieved it isn’t our son or daughter, brother, sister, mom, or dad…all of us wish the story would be different…a somber blanket lay over this small band of witnesses to something so private yet so universal…I bow my head and pray for the family…pray for my family who lives in freedom…pray for my country that she might be healed…as the casket is loaded into the hearse the crowd begins to spread out and I hear a little three year old girl say, “Daddy, can we get some candy now?”…the Dad picks her up and hugs her close…he cannot speak…I walk away and ask God to forgive me for complaining earlier about the weather…

A Gift from High School…

1975

I met a young sweet boy in high school. He was trying to find his way to manhood with a heart so kind and fragile. I, as well, had no idea how to handle the heart of anyone. I desired to be careful yet there is an “innocent ignorance” of youth that is just brutal…
This boy thought that I was unattainable as he watched me from afar laughing with other boys… Oh the angst of those lovely awful years of high school! None of us can know the “power” we have to hurt others…I certainly didn’t.

I liked high school for mostly social reasons. Academically I was only interested in English Lit, and writing with a little bit of interest in history. I suppose I was a “cool kid” in the world of “labels” that befall us in high school. However I was terrified of being a fake. I will never forget one of my classmates who could cut you deeply with his wit…he reminded us almost all of the time that we were ALL fake! I just love that he did that. (Thank you Bill)

One day the sweet boy waited for me after school and asked if he could give me a ride in his car. I said yes and his face turned red. At the time I had no idea how much courage that took but I understand it now. After all the possibility of rejection drives the human soul to craziness.

Now it is some forty years later but I have never forgotten that gentle boy…he went his way and made his life. He is a man now. A good man. I knew he would be…and even now I will smile when I remember what he said to me one day…”you are beautiful inside and out”…such few words yet having a major impact. I took those words with me from that day. I have tried to live up to them and failed many times. It made me want to be a better person…it still makes me want to be better…Thank you sweet boy…I remember…

“now to see things clear is hard enough I know while you’re waiting for reality to show…but when you have a real friend somewhere it makes all the others so much easier to bear…” Jackson Browne

Cage of Flesh and Bone

 

brass wrought container

Photo by Jessica Cortez

 

I heard there was a party not in this Cage of flesh and bone

Since there is little or no magic here, I am stepping on down the road

 

Time is out of mind, send me an inviting card

Just swaying in the Twilight, leaving earth won’t be so hard

 

I was interviewed in a gutter, took a catnap in a palace grand

Just a wayfaring woman, Shadowing the Promise Land

 

A duchess lost in fiction in love with a Strangers moon

Now Truth is my destination, Time will be forgotten soon…

 

 

The solitude of mere humanity (another lesson from Job)

 

person sky silhouette night

Photo by Snapwire

The solitude of mere humanity…without tasting the solitary aloneness of  yourself before the God who created you one cannot experience the path to the Cross of Jesus Christ. Our parents faith, our family, our worldly status, our friends cannot enter into this solitude with us. The paradox of the supernatural and eternal Unity of the Cross with the certainty that we each must meet and know God alone is the reality each human must face.  This is the story of Job and every other human.

There is no way around it but it need not be a terrifying solitude. We cannot hide from this meeting with the Holy.  It is an offensive, not defensive stance.  To come home like the Prodigal son, to repent, to rejoice in the Wholeness provided in Jesus. To remove the facade of religious and worldly answers and simply stand unashamed and naked like Adam did when he was molded from the dirt and dust of the earth in the wonderful marvelous light of God’s presence. There is an innocent soberness to this kind of solitude.  Just us before God without another single human being.

It is in the solitude of mere humanity where there is intimacy without playing games. We all experience a time of total loneliness in this life yet in that place something within us cries out to us that we are NOT alone.  Job experienced this. Jesus certainly experienced this in the most utmost sense of the word. God does not play games with us. We came into this world naked and alone and we will leave this world with the solitary escort of the Holy Spirit of God into the very presence of our Creator, Savior, and King Jesus. That is so astounding and kind and simple.

I believe that God is in love with our human-ness. We are his ultimate design an image bearer of our God. We are the Crown of his creation. Not only does God love us he delights in and trust us with the lives he has given us and in our solitary aloneness  with him we can know these truths intimately.

 

Morning Flight

 

 

backlit bird clouds dark

Photo by George Becker

I take to the wings of morning tattered though they be

for I know the colors of the sunrise will lead me Lord to Thee

 

A flight, a poem, my sonnet  to your greatness

as if I am again in my youth soaring to your kindness

 

Nothing but spheres and beams of your radiant light I see

all darkness and death must finally flee

 

I take the wings of the morning  there you will be

as though there was ever Continue reading