I have this vision of myself soaked in my own tears, sobs wracking my sides, and red rimmed eyes that burn.
I’m hunched in a dark corner bruised, dirty, and beaten down by my own sin.
My sin grows like vines that that never stop twisting around me -- it feeds off of me and I off of it.
I am miserable and cannot not save myself from the things that are slowly killing me.
I look at myself in this vision and I cringe. How truly unloveable I am!
Then, looking up from my own filth I see someone hacking through the thick brambles.
My Savior kneels before me with cuts bleeding on his forearms and face.
My heart grounds itself in hope; maybe I will get to leave this place!
He smiles at me and pulls me into His arms.
He tells me that I am not the defeated person who sits in this corner and weeps, He tells me I am no longer bound to the never ending cycle of trying to get rid of my sin and failing, He tells me that I was not created for this. He tells me He loves me.
I struggle to believe His statements.
These vines of sin are as much a part of me as my own heartbeat.
I begin to explain how many times I have tried to put myself back together and how every time it has not worked.
He lifts my face with His hands and I have no choice but to look at Him.
“Don’t you see?,” tears wet his eyes. “You are mine. You have my heartbeat and my breath in your lungs; these vines are not a part of you. I have bought you with my blood, I have fought for you, I have come to suffer the punishment that your time here as earned you, I have come to take you away from this place. You will no longer be bound to your sin, you will live free.”
“But I have nothing to give you,” I cry out.
“I look at you and I love you,” He says, “I do not want anything in return. I came so that we can be together forever, can you trust that I am the only way to safety and that there is nothing you must do to earn this?”
“I don’t think you understand how terrible I am,” my words sting the air around me, “you don’t want me!”
“I do understand,” He says gently, “I delight in you and all I have ever wanted is to have you with me.”
I had a hard time understanding what He meant but more than anything I wanted to believe that I could be loved exactly as I am.
“I trust you,” I whispered and he lifted me out of my corner and carried me to safety.
I am starting to see myself as Jesus does. I am clothed in the finest clothing I have ever worn, I stand tall, I am without blemish. I am beautiful and blameless.
I always find reasons to run back to my dirty little corner though -- sometimes because it is comfortable and other times I convince myself that it is where I belong.
But every time Jesus chases after me to remind me of who I really am and bring me back home.
He promises me that someday I will never be tempted to go back to my corner and we will spend an eternity together.
He tells me that someday He will take me to paradise but until He comes I must cling to His promises and trust that what He says is true.
I still cannot understand why my perfect Savior fights so relentlessly for me, especially when I think of who I used to be, but I cannot help but be drawn to His gracious love.