That season is here again.
Easter! A time to remember Christ’s sacrifice on Calvary.
Most times, we jump into the euphoria of the season’s celebration without pausing to think – to reflect on the reason for the season.
Why did Jesus die?
What drove Him to calvary?
What lay on His mind as He, with the cross on His shoulders, coupled with the whipping and mockery, journeyed to Gethsemane?
And for our Heavenly Father who thought about His dear son as He carried the weight of sin for humanity… hanging on the cross. Why did He allow Jesus to bear all that sorrow and shame?
John 3:16 summarizes it, “for God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believe in Him will not perish, but have everlasting life“.
So what is the crux of Calvary?
Love for you and me. That love is best described as “Calvary Love”. Here is how a songwriter penned down this overwhelming love:
On the mount of crucifixion
fountains opened deep and wide;
through the floodgates of God’s mercy
flowed a vast and gracious tide.
Grace and love, like mighty rivers,
poured incessant from above,
and heaven’s peace and perfect justice
kissed a guilty world in love.
Do you know Calvary love? Not just by the hearing or reading.
Has the blood that flowed from the veins of Jesus – ripped apart on the altar of love for humanity – washed your sins away?
Is that love so carved in your heart that the world’s eraser won’t wipe its meaning and essence off?
I came across this little book – IF – written by a remarkable woman, Amy Carmichael. Her list of Ifs paints a vivid picture of knowing Calvary’s love.
If I am afraid to speak the truth, lest I lose affection, or lest the one concerned should say, “You do not understand,” or because I fear to lose my reputation for kindness; if I put my own good name before the other’s highest good, then I know nothing of Calvary love.
If I enjoy a joke at the expense of another; if I can in any way slight another in conversation, or even in thought, then I know nothing of Calvary love.
If I cannot catch “the sound of noise of rain”* long before the rain falls, and, going to some hilltop of the spirit, as near to my God as I can, have not faith to wait there with my face between my knees, though six times or sixty times I am told “there is nothing,” till at last “there arises a little cloud out of the sea,” then I know nothing of Calvary love.1Kings 18:41
If I cannot in honest happiness take the second place (or the twentieth); if I cannot take the first without making a fuss about my unworthiness, then I know nothing of Calvary love.
If I become entangled in any “inordinate affection”; if things or places or people hold me back from obedience to my Lord, then I know nothing of Calvary love.
If the praise of man elates me and his blame depresses me; if I cannot rest under misunderstanding without defending myself; if I love to be loved more than to love, to be served more than to serve, then I know nothing of Calvary love.
More “Ifs” Of Calvary Love
And I added my list of Ifs…
If I only remember, reflect on, sing and talk about Christ’s death on Calvary during “Easter”, and gently let it slip off my mind, allowing the trivial things of this world to take over, and as I leave this month of April and walk into May, think that the season is over hence I could forget about Christ’s sacrifice and get carried away with “other” things, then I know nothing of Calvary love.
If I spend less time in the study of God’s word and more time surfing the net for unedifying updates; less time in communion with God and more time chatting online/offline with friends; less time in fellowship with God’s children and more time in attending social gatherings/parties; less time talking about Jesus and more time talking about myself, then I know nothing of Calvary love.
If I think that all about my Christianity is in the heart and that my outward appearance does not matter; I define modesty in a way that suits me, not looking at it in the light of the scripture (1 Tim. 2: 9,10) or not even giving it a thought; and care less about how my dressing/appearance could affect my brother or sister (those around me), then I know nothing of Calvary love.
If I am so consumed with the pursuit of wealth, fame, success, beauty in this world, and care less (or don’t even care) of laying up treasures in heaven, and consciously preparing for that home on high, then I know nothing of Calvary love.
If I profess love for my family and friends (all those around me) and share ideas with them on issues like health, success, career, relationships, religion, and other things could make life better here, and not even in the slightest way, tell them about the life beyond earthly living (heaven for the saved and hell for sinners), then I know nothing of Calvary love.
Make your own list of “Ifs” and share it with us in the comment section.
Have a great Easter ahead!