DECEMBER 9: Best at worst.
We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father full of grace and truth.*
If Jesus gave us the best impression of God’s love, how must we synthesize the two, crucial ingredients (grace and truth). In other words, how can we understand how much God loves us right now and what affect it’s supposed to have on us mentally, emotionally, behaviorally?
It means God loves you no matter what and honestly reveals the way to flourish.
Or, a way you can remember it when you need to remember it most is…
Even at your worst,
God loves you most
and wants your best.
Several years ago, we chose to euthanize our precious dog, Chaz. We loved that dog. But earlier that year, he was diagnosed with “doggy ALS”: degenerative myelopathy. As much as we enjoyed all the years caring for Chaz, the responsibility of that care didn’t really sink in until the final week of his life. When a pet is adopted (by caring owners), we adopt certain powers in their lives—even the power to help them end pain peacefully. In the end, he had no pain. We absorbed the pain, we paid for it. We cried. He went to sleep. Why? We cared about him. If he was in the wild and had the same condition, it would’ve been a torturous final few weeks.
That’s love. The truth of seeing what’s best and the grace to provide it.
If Jesus is the clearest impression of God’s love, it went even further than we went for Chaz.
You want to know what the manger has to do with the love of God? The child born that day became the man who die for us. This is the “glory” that John claims they witnessed. Did you know the earliest Jesus followers did not refer to Jesus’ birth as “glorious”. They commonly called another event the “glory of Jesus”:
If you had to describe the love of God in two words it would be “grace” and “truth”. If you had to explain it with one image, it would be the cross.
The TRUTH is our sin is life-threatening—whether we know it or not.
GRACE is God absorbing that death—whether we trust Him or not.
PRAYER FOR TODAY
“God, even at my worst, you love me most and want my best. The cross is the unforgettable moment that proves it to me. May I trust your love and your vision for me today and live free from shame and fear.”
*John’s biography of Jesus, chapter 1, verse 14, emphasis mine