Our Lenten Devotion for Wednesday, March 23, comes to us from Steadfast Love which features reflections and prayers by Ed Arle and Gil Duchow with inspiration from the works of Henri J.M. Nouwen.
18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3:18-19 NIV
“Deep and Wide”
“Your heart is broken, the heart that did not know hatred, revenge, resentment, jealousy or envy but only love, love so deep and so wide that it embraces your Father in heaven as well as all humanity in time and space. Your broken heart is the source of my salvation, the foundation of my hope, the cause of my love.”
(from Heart Speaks to Heart by Henri J.M. Nouwen, page 36Henri)
“I don’t get it. I don’t understand.” I don’t know how often I’ve said those words over my lifetime: “I’ll never figure out these directions.” That’s when someone will say, “Why not call the handyman?” And when he comes, his first words are, “Who put this together?” And my inability to comprehend, to understand, to grasp the meaning of things goes even deeper when it comes to the love of God that surpasses any and all of my knowledge. But you know something? That doesn’t bother me anymore. While I’ll never understand how God could love a broken person such as myself, I know that he does. He loves my up, down, sideways, inside and out. I know because of Jesus. And as long as I live, I will strive to love him just the same.
I often use the words from this reflection, “I don’t get it. I don’t understand.” Although I do keep trying to learn, these expressions are often in relations to modern technology. Each of us is broken is different ways, and yet God loves us, forgives us, and calls us to carry on in faithful ways. God’s faithfulness is far beyond our human ability to understand; God doesn’t need for us to understand, but to be open to the guidance of the Holy Spirit in our lives. I invite you to consider ways that you feel you don’t understand God, remembering that God understands you all the time, loves you, forgives you, and calls you to share your “belovedness” with others.
Dear Lord Jesus, I will never understand this love you have for me. It goes far beyond my knowledge and understanding. Help me to stop trying to figure you out and just accept your love. Amen.