Sunday, May 12, 2013

A Passion Play

My Beloved Sister In Christ,

I want to tell you that I am soon to be writing on the "manifestation" of the reign (or kingdom) of God.  Jesus said the Kingdom of God is in your midst and the Kingdom (or reign) of God is in you.  I want to share two unique tangible /  visible representations of the manifestation of Christs reign on the earth through extensions of his life, i.e. through the actions of two appendages.  

The first is a young lady named Grace (You), who puts her life on hold to come down to serve my suffering friend and his wife. She comes simply to demonstrate the love of God by cooking, cleaning, changing dressings, house keeping, chauffeuring  gophering, helps and in countless selfless acts of love.  I watch from afar and I am moved as I see a powerful visible manifestation of Christ on earth demonstrating his selfless love and service through you.  That is the Kingdom or Reign of God on the earth as it is in heaven.  As the old hymn goes, "Heaven came down and glory filled my soul."  Observing the divine passion play before my eyes, I am moved to glorify God for such love and devotion.

Second is the suffering selfless servant named Charity, his wife.  Putting her life, her needs, and even her emotions on hold, she kneels down washes, massages, anoints and kisses the feet the of the man she adores.  For her there is no time for tears for her own pain, but she tirelessly and single mindedly leaves no stone unturned in her attempts to demonstrate her love for her beloved;  while all the time living with the thought that this may soon end and I may never have another day with the man I love and have loved all these years.  Ignoring her own deep pain and sorrow she focuses on him even though the wounds deep within her soul  cry out for relief.  I have watched her with awe these past two years, as she, like Mary, kneels at the foot of the cross having her heart broken, torn out and yet every disappointment, every painful memory, every setback is just an occasion for her to dig deeper within to mine out untapped veins of love.  These untapped resources give her the strength to continue to demonstrate that "love neither seeks nor needs nothing for itself  but seeks only what is best for the beloved".  Love gives and gives neither expecting nor receiving anything in return.  I now understand my mothers maxim, you must "Love Until It Hurts"

Subsequently I have seen demonstrated the truth that my beloved  friend and brother has often verbalized:  that in God's kingdom, God's economy,  love is the coin of the realm!   I have watched his wife lavish loves fortune on her man.  I am so deeply impacted by what I have seen, I am so moved that not even tears can fully express the awesome truth I have beheld - the truth of  "Christ in you the hope of Glory."  Such love makes my heart soar.  As it takes wing  I recall with a new grace and understanding a poem I have cherished since my youth:

Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth,
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;

Sunward I've climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth

Of sun-split clouds, --and done a hundred things

You have not dreamed of --Wheeled and soared and swung

High in the sunlit silence. Hov'ring there

I've chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air...
Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue
I've topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace
Where never lark or even eagle flew --
And, while with silent lifting mind I've trod
The high untrespassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.

... and I have been touched.

As I have watched this life and death drama, this passion play being played out upon earths stage before my very eyes, and as I do I  recall a line from another beloved hymn:

"I stand amazed in the presence of Jesus the Nazarene."

And I am.  Jesus indeed is alive and well and living on planet earth.  I have experienced him thus.

With Thanksgiving,

Your brother in Christ