Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Sunday

Today at church our pastor talked about how God is more holy than we can envision, our sin is worse than we can imagine, and His grace is greater than we can fathom.  As with almost all of Pastor Kevin's sermons, I walked out of the service thinking, "That is SO true!"  Sometimes I see God as sort of a pocket pal; a cool little thing that a bunch of my friends and I all collect.  Sometimes I see Him as a perpetual WWJD bracelet used to convict me of things I'm doing wrong and to remind me to do what is right.  Sometimes I see Him as a therapist who I can talk to about my feelings and emotions and He can say "How does that make you feel?"  Sometimes I see Him as a malicious map drawer who knows the course my life is supposed to take, but He won't let me see it because He's having fun watching me run around in circles trying to figure it out myself.  Sometimes I see Him as a loving father, and sometimes as a wrathful avenger.  I know that some of these perceptions are true, and I know that some of them aren't.  One thing I know for sure, though, is that I can't fathom who God is.  His holiness goes beyond anything I will ever be able to figure out.  Pastor Kevin said it's like mixing the awe of entering a huge European cathedral with the amazement of looking into the Grand Canyon with the fear of suddenly finding yourself face to face with a bear.  It's so amazing and beautiful, but terrifying at the same time.  I wish I could fully understand this holiness, but at the same time I bet I wouldn't be able to handle it if I could.

I also learned that my sin is worse than I can imagine, but that His grace is greater than I can fathom.  I think sometimes my pride gets in the way of letting me see how sinful I really am.  It seems that I justify myself by saying my sins aren't as bad as others'.  For one thing, I actually do try to follow God.  I tell myself that has to count for something, but with His kingdom it's not actually the thought that counts.  I tell myself that the sins I've committed aren't as "bad" as some of the ones others have committed, but James 2:10 reminds me that "whoever shall keep the whole law and yet stumble in one point, he is guilty of all."  Sin is kind of an all or nothing type deal.  Either a person is sinful or they aren't.  Black and white.  People try to see it as a spectrum: "Yeah, I'm not as pure white as God, but maybe I'm sort of a dusty gray...not as gray as ashes and especially not black...maybe a salt and pepper type color."  No.  All people are sinful.  The end.  The thing is, when I compare myself to other people it is completely pointless.  Compared to some people I am going to be a saint, but compared to others I am going to be a devil.  Comparing myself to God is the only thing that matters, and that comparison is laughable.  It's like comparing a marble to the sun.

The funny part of that is, though, that God still loves me!  He wants me as a part of His kingdom - what?!!  That doesn't even make any sense!  If you recall from my "Talents" entry in March, I really don't have that much to offer.  My sinful nature has rendered me completely useless to God, and yet He wants to cover that with His only son's blood so that I can be with Him?!  Excuse me?  I don't have any kids, but if someone asked me to sacrifice my pet rat Cindy in order to save some mediocre little bug who mostly just ignored me all of the time, I would say no way in a million years.  Yet God sent his SON to die for ME?!?!!?  This is craziness!  I can hardly believe it!  I mean, yes I have heard this since I was two years old, but every time I really realize this it still amazes me.  WOW.  God is so cool.  

Happy Easter, everyone!

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