|John 3:16 – For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son…
Reflecting on this familiar scripture passage in a Lenten devotional book entitled “Blessings of the Cross” popular Christian author Max Lucado writes:
As boldly as the center beam of the cross proclaims God’s holiness, the crossbeam declares his love. And, oh, how wide his love reaches.
Aren’t you glad the verse does not read:
“For God so loved the rich…”?
Or, “For God so loved the famous…”?
Or, “For God so loved the thin…”?
It doesn’t. Nor does it state, “For God so loved the Europeans or Africans…” “the sober or successful…” “the young or the old…”
No, when we read John 3:16, we simply (and happily) read, “For God so loved the world.”
How wide is God’s love? Wide enough for the whole world.
As a people of God we have the chance this month to worship together focusing: in the remaining days of Lent on the path of mission and ministry that led our Lord to the cross; in the days of Holy Week reminding us of the deep passion that moved Jesus to fulfill completely his purpose for coming by experiencing everything of our life, even death; and, then, into the Easter Season showing us again the ultimate power of God in the resurrection that allows his love to be alive in us even now.
So, I invite and encourage each of you to join with me and others of our community of faith each time we gather in worship, during this holy time, to experience the full story of that “wide and wondrous” love of God in our Savior, Jesus, the Christ for us and for the whole wide world!
Rev. Jimmy Lee Werley