Stepping in front of a bullet

I lost sleep last night as I thought about how the majority of our world completely misses the magnitude of what Jesus Christ did by giving up His life so that we might have the chance to be with Him. People I know and love came to mind as I considered how many people have rejected Jesus. I felt overwhelmed by the weight of the sum total of people who will live and die and reject Christ. I asked Jesus how He could make that sacrifice knowing only some would accept Him. How could he suffer and die in our place, and still have so many of us completely miss Him and the relationship He wants with us?

As I was praying, a metaphor came to mind that helped me understand Jesus’ heart a little better. In this scenario, I have adopted children. I imagine that someone points a gun at them and is about to pull the trigger. If I don't intervene, they're dead. So I manage to step in front of the gun and allow the bullet to pierce me instead. But what would happen if my adopted kids were to turn to me after this sacrifice and say “you’re not my mom”? After I’ve given my life so they can live, what if they rejected me and the relationship I desired to have with them? If I were to have foreknowledge of their rejection of me, would I still stand in front of the gun? The answer is an obvious yes! They’re my kids and I love them. I’d still sacrifice myself for them, even if they rejected me immediately after.  

And again, it all comes back to Jesus’ overwhelming love for us. While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. It’s His kindness that leads us to repentance. He sacrificed everything, taking on our sin and shame, and gave us His life and righteousness so we can stand clean and pure before His throne. All of this is motivated by His great love for us and His desire for us to walk with Him. Oh, how I hope we don’t completely miss this grace today. It’s so easy for us to become numb to the idea of Jesus’ love.  I hope meditating on His great love and His desire to be near us today would stir our affections for Him!

"You did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!” The Spirit himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God.” Romans 8:15-16

"He chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love he predestined us for adoption as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved." Ephesians 1:4-6

-- Jen