Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Witness to Love

Julian of Norwich goes on to say:
I said this because I did not want to look up, for I would rather have remained in that pain until Judgment Day that have come to heaven any other way than by him.  
This is a statement Julian makes in response to what she is witnessing - the love for her expressed by God through his death on a cross.  She knows that this is her way to heaven, and she is so grateful for the action, so immersed in love for God, and so loyal to his suffering, that no other way to heaven will do.  It will be this way.

That doesn't say it's the only way - it's not an exclusionary statement.  It's a statement of gratitude and love.

And I imagine she knows what she is saying when she says it. Jesus isn't sitting poolside enjoying a vacation.  He is suffering, dying.  She sees the death, in great detail, and in this writing, tells us about it.  She knows that this way - this way with Christ - is one of suffering.

She is suffering with him as he dies.  Who do we suffer with, because we love them so much?  Who does God call us to suffer with, for the sake of God's love for that person?  How will you follow Christ to heaven? Will you follow him through suffering for others?

(Don't hear that as a call to martyred pain.  It's a call to make love for others so strong that you won't walk away from their suffering.)

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