Friday, August 13, 2010

Timeless battle over what's important

Isaiah 53: 2-9 (King James Version)

2 For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.

3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

4 Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.

8 He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken.

9 And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth.

This passage has always been one of my favorite in the scriptures. To me, it vividly brings home what has been done and borne for me, personally. Regardless of whether or not I was the only inhabitant of this planet or the world’s population numbers in the trillions, the actions and sacrifice of the savior would be the same. He still would have voluntarily laid down his life for me, without a whimper, question, or second thought. That depth and breadth of love is one that I often forget about in my daily life.

As I was reading this passage I had to stop and ask myself: Am I trying to be LIKE him, or BETTER than him – in the eyes of the world? The description above states that his beauty was such that he wasn’t desired and that he was despised and rejected of men. Although he gave his very life for us, WE hid our faces from him. So I ask again: Whose opinion do we find ourselves trying to gain – the worlds or our Saviors?
What’s the point in trying to intellectually understand everything (something I find myself doing too often -- probably because I've spent years and thousands of dollars on my education) if something as basic as a gift of love and life is unabashedly discounted and rejected? What’s it matter if I know how many angels fit on the head of a pin or where Noah’s Ark landed? Those are piddley, in the grand scheme of things, and don’t really matter. Sometimes leading with my mind leads me to overlook the simplest things – and gifts. I’ve found that I often make things more complicated than need be.

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