Daily Archives: December 21, 2011

Day 21: He is Jealous for Me

He is jealous for me; loves like a hurricane and I am a tree, bending beneath the wind of His wind and mercy. When all of a sudden I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory  and I realize just how beautiful You are and how great Your affections are for me.

And oh, how He loves us, oh. Oh, how He loves us; how He loves us all!

And we are His portion and He is our Prize; drawn to redemption by the grace in His eyes. If His grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking.

And heaven meets earth like an unforeseen kiss and my heart turns round violently inside of my chest. I don’t have time to maintain these regrets when I think about the way….

Love.

One simple word can speak so much into the lives of those around us. It also happens to be one of my favorite words in the English language. Granted, I wish we had more alternatives for the word like the Greeks did, with agape being the deepest of them all.

That word alone is probably why I love Christmas so much. It’s one of the most joyous Christian holidays, a time to remember the birth of Christ our Savior. Christmas is time when we share blessing with others (this should be done all year long, not just December) and are surround by those we love.

Not long ago, a young family member asked me “Why  did God send Jesus if He knew He was going to die?”

Thing is, He wasn’t just going to die. He was going to be mocked, beaten, tortured, and then sentenced to die a slow, painful death by crucifixion. All at the hands of those He came to save.

We tend to remember the good times in life…both ours and in the life of Jesus. We love telling the Nativity story and studying His words of wisdom, reading about His acts of love and servitude, and His healing. But…but, we forget that shortly after His birth, an angel told the family to flee from Herod’s army. We forget about His suffering. We forget the price He paid, for our sins. We forget the lengths that God went to show His love. (Read Romans 5:8).

Thinking about all that leaves me in awe.  God knew the very creatures He created would crucify Him for trying to save us from ourselves. He went as far as prophesying this through the prophets; the suffering He would endure. And yet…

God lowered Himself in Christ, feeling physical pain and suffering. God lowered Himself  and let mere humans mock and beat Him. God, who has all the power in the universe, humbled Himself to be lower; to die at our sinful, hateful hands. (Read Hebrews 2:9).

God knew all of this would happen at the beginning of time, and yet, He loved us so immensely that He sent His Son to suffer a painful death just so we could spend eternity with our Heavenly Father (John 3:16). That is love.

God is jealous for you.

His love is like a hurricane. Picture that. Feel His waves of mercy.

And if His grace were an ocean…we’re all sinking.

My personal prayer for you: May you feel His love and sink within His grace this year. God is so worth it!

Week 41: An Afternoon with My Dad

This past weekend, I had one of the most memorable moments of my life. Each year, we draw names with my grandmother, one aunt, an uncle and the rest of my family; I got my dad. Since I get discounted tickets through work, I thought it would be cool to see the Vikings play at the Mall of America Field. Granted…this decision was made long before their whopper of a season came into play.

So, I told him of my idea and wanted to see if he would be all for it. He was and chose the game against the New Orleans Saints on December 18th. Since my grandmother would be turning 80 the day before, my entire family decided to come up and celebrate with her. We also figured why not throw in the Christmas party while we were all up here?

Saturday rolled around and my entire family (in-laws included) showed up around 5 pm for dinner at Teppanyaki Grill in south Minneapolis. If you’ve never been and love seafood, sushi, Japanese, Chinese and American cuisine, I highly recommend at least checking the restaurant out. Great food! I had my fill after one plate.

We then headed back to my apartment (a small space for 11 people, but doable) and enjoyed opening gifts and playing a few games, including an uproarious round of Telephone Pictionary. We’re still trying to figure out how one gets “An elf making love to a Christmas tree” out of “Happy Holidays…” but the mystery continues. I might add that the artwork was quite hilarious.

Sunday morning brought brunch at my grandmothers and then a nice walk (the weather was absolutely beautiful) down to the Metrodome. The first half was interesting…second…I think our team forgot there was another half of a game to play. It was brutal; hard to watch…and yet, we still made the most of it and had a blast.

Life definitely is mostly about how you react to the situations that get thrown your way. We could have chosen to be depressed over the fact that our team was really lowzy, but we didn’t. We chose to enjoy ourselves, laugh at stupidity and overall, have a great time.