As I have been doing immense amounts of reading this month, I always have innumerable ideas floating through my puny mind. It’s quite a clutter, which I attempt to allow God to sort out and bring good order to in my sleep and my prayer. He did that especially one particular evening.
One of the insights I happened on this past week was related to the hermeneutical-density of the Cross, i.e. that the Cross has packed into it an excess of meaning that is literally inexhaustible. One can never cease to draw new insights from reflecting and gazing on that old rugged Cross, which is itself the axis of history and the source of the new life of grace.
But it was one comment (that I had already read a year earlier) by an author in particular that knocked me on the floor, and it went something like this –throughout the Old Testament, God’s luminous engagement with fallen humanity passed through the murky lens of sin and evil and violence and injustice, and through this lens God ‘appeared’ as terrifying and violent and dangerous. But on the Cross, the omnipotent and infinite God, creator of the unimaginable vastless of our 300 sextillion galaxies, manifested himself through the supremely transparent lens of the Word-made-flesh as powerless, naked, helpless so as to communicate to humanity a most extraordinary message: I don’t want to hurt you. My unlimited power is love, and love places all-power at the service of the beloved. And in the Resurrection he retained those Wounds as an imperishable sign of God’s infinitely weak-power.
On the floor as I lay there, what this consideration elicited from me, for a flash, was a depth of trust I’ve never before tasted, and a realization that it is precisely at the moment we find ourselves co-crucified with Him – powerless, naked, helpless — that we need to hear that message most.
Into those hands I am most willing to commend my spirit…