Monday, April 21, 2014

Thou Art Graven On His Hand

As we gathered with twenty-two children to celebrate a Seder meal  last Wednesday night, we sang one of my favorite hymns. I especially love three lines in the second verse:
Thou art my chosen
For I have sought thee
Thou art graven on my hand
And I was once again struck by the deep and personal nature of God's love for us.

The other day, Jamie  returned from an amazing retreat and wrote this:

I had an amazing encounter with Jesus this weekend, with a love so tender and humble and patient that it made me say yes, YES, of course I will. I am pretty quiet about my faith in real life, for all that I shoot my mouth off here on the blog, but this morning in Panera I wanted to shout, "Attention, customers of Panera: Jesus really loves you! It's amazing!"

I wasn't sure that would be productive, so I am telling you instead: Jesus really loves you. It's amazing.

God loves you.
He has numbered the hairs on your head.
He has counted your tears.
He knows the plans He has for you, plans for a future and a hope.
He died that you might live forever.
He has gone to prepare a place for you.
He has sent you a helper.

And all this is true  . . .
even if you're bored stiff at church.
even if you've been hurt by institutional church.
even if you're convinced you've sinned like no other.
even if you had parents who tried to beat the love of god into you or the devil out of you.
even if the person sitting in the next pew at your last church was a complete hypocrite.
even if you've encountered dismissive clergy, unkind nuns, bureaucratic church staff.
even if you've sworn you'd never associate with those kind of people.

None of this alters one bit the fact that God loves you.

But you don't know what I've done.

No, I don't.

But God does.

And He loves you.


christinelaennec said...

Excellent post, Kelly. I often realise what a struggle it is to believe that God actually completely and conditionally loves me as I am. Being a parent helps with this a bit - I imagine my love for my children. Something to work on every day!

Kelly Dolin said...

Amen, Christine. It is a life's work.

John received his post card. He was so excited. Thanks so much!

I've loved reading about your travels.