It began with a love that really is God’s gift to women and men.
It began with all you could ever want, and yet it was not enough.
We kept on looking for more, for the fruit we could not eat, the sky we could not reach. We wanted freedom from what bound us, and rulers to command us. We wanted food we could eat and gods we could touch.
We wanted our way. And God let us.
Here was a love that kept on stretching. It kept on saving. It kept on giving.
Each time it was spurned it chose another route to demonstrate all of the love it had for those it did not want to live without. After what seemed like one rejection too many it all went quiet. It was as though He got the hint.
And the men and women for whom the love was intended made up their own minds about the one they wanted. The strong one, the holy one, the one with status, the one who always got things right.
Despite their varied hues they all wanted the same thing. One who would save them, who would put right the defeats of the past.
While the God who loved them wanted their hearts to turn, all they turned to was their own ways. They didn’t want love, they wanted salvation. The enemy occupiers who made their lives a daily misery needed to be vanquished and they waited for the one who would do that.
And he came right under their nose. He appeared to the lowly and the foreigners, he called the despised and rejected. He cried tears of pain, he was moved by compassion. He threatened the elites, confounded the critics, baffled the teachers. They could not cope with him. They pushed him around, cast judgement upon judgement and hung him in ignominy upon a tree.
The curtain rent. The earth quaked.
It was like on the stone table of Narnia I had read about as a kid. They throw around talk of deep magic from the dawn of time, but forget what came before that dawn.
Death was not the end. Not then, not now.
Those choices long ago, and repeated each and every day, violently drove iron into his hands and feet as he hung.
This was where love won. It is a magnificent vista, of love finding its mark. Of beauty displayed and exhibited for the very purpose it was designed.
They wanted a king and they got one. He was bringing his kingdom into being. It was a kingdom built on the verge of collapse. It was a victory won through, and not out of, the jaws of defeat.
Our cry for rescue is met not just with a helping hand, but with outstretched arms. Our longing for life receives not just a prescription or prerequisites, but the fuel for the journey. And what a journey we have ahead of us.
With a Son who called for God’s will to be done, on earth as in heaven. For a kingdom that will not end, but has already begun. For a world that is broken and scarred, but not beyond redemption. For a role for us to be the bearers of God’s image on this earth, to work to share His good news, to live to reflect his goodness into every corner of the globe. To take the chance to lead a lost world into life. To be leaders for the sake of the world.
PUBLIC LEADERSHIP TAKEOVER! All this week we’re featuring articles about public leadership, which is leadership in politics, media, business, education or the arts, any area outside the Church where leadership is needed and where Christians can step up and be a voice for good.
There are two weekends in 2016 to connect, encourage and equip public leaders aged 18-35: 18-20 March in Staffordshire and 15-17 April in Northern Ireland. To find out more and how to apply head to www.thepublicleader.com/gathering