The truest form of love is reverent, cherishing life as it is eternally defined; precious, sacred, abundant, worthy to defend and, yet, already victorious. Reverent love defers to life, seeking, guarding, preserving, reflecting and blamelessly broadcasting it to every mountain and hollow.
Reverence for life requires a deep humility that sees and fearlessly affirms our human degradation. To fully revere life we must also know death as an inherited independence from God. Oswald Chambers says, “Never allow the thought that Jesus Christ stands with us against God out of pity and compassion; that He became a curse for us out of sympathy with us….Jesus Christ hates the wrong in man, and Calvary is the estimate of his hatred”. We have inherited a spirit that craves glory, that steals glory by fiercely promoting its own merit, its own worthiness. More deeply than we resist surrender, Jesus loathes our refusal to recognize our need for more of him.
We are far too casual about life. We need it. And, yet, we mistake the air we breathe and the blood running blue in our veins as miracles we’ve somehow orchestrated without aid or that we somehow deserve. Truthfully, we need life because we cannot ever author, govern, destroy or redeem it or ourselves. When we refuse to surrender to the One who first breathed life, when we confuse our daily happenstance as the most relevant and pressing life, we miss our need and cannot receive the life made eternal for us by the cross.
It is the power of this victory that defines life in its purest form, perfect and unsullied by death. God is unsullied life; Jesus manifests unsullied life on the cross; the Holy Spirit manifests unsullied life in surrendered hearts. As we surrender our stained spirits to make room for his, we receive the mark of eternal inheritance, life of unequivocal purpose. We are holy-fied!
Sometimes we forget that life and death have already done battle. The war was waged thousands of years ago. The foundation of this world and the next is built on the Creator’s unmarred life. Surely, patiently and painfully he continues to script history. There has never been a moment in which our Lord has not been present; life has triumphed in every single word since he first spoke eons ago. I can pat myself on the back, admire something I’ve done, find security in the things I think I know…..but when I dare consider the origin of this place, I am immediately and fully made small. It is from this reverent place that we must begin each day. Small, yet full of vast, victorious life.