Friday, July 16, 2010

Chosen, blessed, broken, given…

Jesus is taken by God or, better, chosen by God. Jesus is the Chosen One. From all eternity God has chosen his most precious Child to become the saviour of the world. Being chosen expresses a special relationship, being known and loved in a unique way, being singled out. In our society our being chosen always implies that others are not chosen. But this is not true for God. God chooses his Son to reveal to us our chosenness.

In the Kingdom of God there is no competition or rivalry. The Son of God shares his chosenness with us. In the Kingdom of God each person is precious and unique, and each person has been given eyes to see the chosenness of others and rejoice in it…

Jesus is the Blessed One. When Jesus was baptised in the Jordan river a voice came from heaven saying: “You are my Son, the Beloved; my favour rests on you” (Mark 1:11). This was the blessing that sustained Jesus during his life. Whatever happened to him - praise or blame - he clung to his blessing; he always remembered that he was the favourite child of God.

Jesus came into the world to share that blessing with us. He came to open our ears to the voice that also says to us, “You are my beloved son, you are my beloved daughter, my favour rests on you .” When we can hear that voice, trust in it, and always remember it, especially during dark times, we can live our lives as God’s blessed children and find the strength to share that blessing with others…

Jesus was broken on the cross. He lived his suffering and death not as an evil to avoid at all costs, but as a mission to embrace. We too are broken. We live with broken bodies, broken hearts, broken minds or broken spirits. We suffer from broken relationships.

How can we live our brokenness? Jesus invites us to embrace our brokenness as he embraced the cross and live it as part of our mission. He asks us not to reject our brokenness as a curse from God that reminds us of our sinfulness but to accept it and put it under God’s blessing for our purification and sanctification. Thus our brokenness can become a gateway to new life…

Jesus is given to the world. He was chosen, blessed, and broken to be given. Jesus’ life and death were a life and death for others. The Beloved Son of God, chosen from all eternity, was broken on the cross so that this one life could multiply and become food for people of all places and all times.

As God’s beloved children we have to believe that our little lives, when lived as God’s chosen and blessed children, are broken to be given to others. We too have to become bread for the world. When we live our brokenness under the blessing, our lives will continue to bear fruit from generation to generation. That is the story of the saints - they died, but they continue to be alive in the hearts of those who live after them - and it can be our story too…

Henri Nouwen, from Bread for the Journey

All our lives are to be lived as a subset of Christ’s, it seems to me. This must be what following him really means. What surprises me is how long it has taken for me to see this at all clearly…

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