Sunday, March 18, 2012
God Loves the World
Jesus said to Nicodemus, "Just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him may have eternal life.
"For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him may not perish but may have eternal life.
"Indeed, God did not send the Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Those who believe in him are not condemned; but those who do not believe are condemned already, because they have not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and people loved darkness rather than light because their deeds were evil. For all who do evil hate the light and do not come to the light, so that their deeds may not be exposed. But those who do what is true come to the light, so that it may be clearly seen that their deeds have been done in God." John 3:14-21
When the weather is warm the dolphins move in and out of the Delaware Bay several times of day, with the tides, looking for abundant feeding grounds. These large pods or family grouping of dolphins are so gorgeous to watch, often leaping and playing after they feed. I always want to hold my breath as I watch them, they fill my heart with so much joy, so much love. These glorious creatures, made from the hands of a most magnificent loving Creator, always remind me of God's loving touch in all of creation.
Nicodemus is a worried man. He is faithful but anxious and worried to understand what God was doing and what God was all about. Jesus told Nicodemus and all of us that God so loves the world. God's first action towards all of creation is love and that love is sacrificial and transforming, making even the dullest beautiful, the darkest hearts full of radiant light.
May we who, like Nicodemus, worry too much, or are struggling to understand God's activity in our lives remember that God's first action towards us is love and second is sacrificial, transforming love. We are beloved, beyond our understanding, precious and heart-stoppingly beautiful in the eyes of God. May we look on one another today as precious and beautiful gifts from God, who aches for love of all creation.
Gracious Father, whose blessed Son Jesus Christ came down from heaven to be the true bread which gives life to the world: Evermore give us this bread, that he may live in us, and we in him; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.