Monday, April 2, 2012

Risking Identity for Christ-like Love

I'm re-reading The Mystery of Marriage as I think through our first year together, looking at how God has worked and how I'd like to see Him work in me in the months to come.  I came across this passage from the book that sums up exactly where I am.  I hope it is encouraging to you as it was to me.  I've recorded some of my one-year thanks down below as well {smile}

From The Mystery of Marriage, by Mike Mason, in reference to losing our self in our love for our spouse:

What is called for is an abandonment so deep and drastic that what we ourselves perceive to be our identity will almost certainly be lost sight of, set adrift.  We must be prepared to enter a no-man's-land, a limbo of self-perception, a state that for any other reason but love would be insanity.  Was this not what the Lord Himself chose to do when He threw away the transcendent, invisible cloak in which He had been wrapped since the beginning of time and became a man--and not only a man, but a tiny baby?  He must have entered some limbo of self-identity, a limbo such that all the theologians of twenty centuries have been unable to pin down exactly who or what category of being this Bethlehem baby is not that the death of our identities, in and of itself, has any grand meaning or importance.  Such a death may accomplish nothing more than to gain us entrance into a psychiatric ward.  No, what is necessary is to die for another.  If we go out on a limb, we must do it for someone else.  We must get so close to the center of another's soul that we feel the ground slipping out from under us and fear our sanity.  We must come our from our dark, protected corners and go near the edge, consenting to the dizzy, bewildering pull that others are able to exert on us.  For God has not kept Himself immaculately sterilized in some hermetically sealed heaven....We do not really want our Lord to have hair on his body, let alone blood oozing out of His wounds.  We do not really want love to be breathing down our necks.  We never asked for that.  Yet that is the sort of God the Lord is, and the simple truth is that in Jesus Christ this God has drawn far too close to us for comfort, knocking against our heart and leaving a messy broken body on our doorstep.  And this is supposed to be the pattern fo love.  Getting too close for comfort.  Identifying whole heartedly with others, regardless of the messiness, heedless of the risk to our own identity, in order that we might be identified with our Lord Jesus Christ.

Grateful for:

~my Savior and King, who is so patient with me as I learn to love
~my wonderful husband, who is an excellent model of this Christ-like love
~our time here in FL, to get away and really build our new life together
~all the challenges, for they have drawn us closer to Christ and each other
~the many encouraging words we have received from others along the way
~new opportunities springing up to help us grow
~River Oaks church, and the encouragement it has been to us
~our lovely little 2 BD apartment, a place to call home
~new grace for each day
~learning to understand and appreciate each other more every day
~the year ahead, and all the surprises, blessings, and challenges it will bring
~our Faithful Father, King, and Shepherd, who has and will lead us every step of the way

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