The Famous One
A man made famous for hate died yesterday. He left a legacy of generations that learned his craft well, a petri dish of a family that has incubated and perpetuated that infectious disease until they too became famous for it.
And he did it, as they do now, in the name of serving God.
It makes my heart ache to think of all the folks who truly believe God hates them, or at the very least, doesn’t care when the people who claim to speak for Him abuse and accuse them. I don’t believe for a moment that this is what God wants them to believe about Him. After all, He went to a great deal of trouble to see that the lost are found, the blind regain sight, the sick are made well, and the captives set free.
He never condemned the lost, the blind, the sick, or the captives for being lost, blind, sick, or captive. He saw the mess, let His heart break open with compassion, and poured out His best to rescue us. He poured out Himself.
Sometimes the memory of being the one lost, blind, sick, and captive dances before me so fresh that it feels like it was only five minutes ago that I was drowning in that horrible pit. I am glad He lets me remember it that way sometimes. I don’t want to forget that He transforms us because we need to be transformed and cannot change ourselves. I don’t want to forget that it was and is me that He changed and is changing.
I don’t want to forget how He loves.
Men become famous for all kinds of things. Like how well they can hit a baseball, how attractive they are, how well they can sing, their inventiveness, their bank accounts. They can also be famous for devious schemes, murderous crimes, vile acts, thievery…the stuff bubbling up from the pit of hell, stinking of sulphur.
A man famous for hate died yesterday. History will eventually forget him.
But 2000 years ago, a Man famous for love died so that hate would be forgettable.
And eternity will resound with the power of that transforming, redeeming, all-consuming love forever.