***SPOILER ALERT: If you plan to watch the movie Wonder you may want to wait to read this email until after you’ve seen it!***
Good Friday Morning,
A few weeks ago, the Friday message was “Friday with the Captain”, and I wrote about how even after a couple months of letting fear and anxiety impact my attitude at work, that my supervisor (or captain), still desired for me to be on a new team that she is leading. Basically even after being a brat, she still accepts me – she looks beyond my weakness. While it probably was obvious to most of you reading, it didn’t really dawn on me until after hitting the send key the day I wrote that but in a small way, this is a real life example of the Gospel, extending grace and forgiveness when it’s not deserved.
Romans 5:8 says “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
So onto the movie Wonder…My son’s school took them all to see this movie the Monday before Thanksgiving but my son was sick that day so I promised to take him sometime. We went to see the movie the Sunday after Thanksgiving. I cried at several scenes but the one that grabbed my heart the most is when Auggie’s friend stuck up for him and even fought the bully. His friend was willing to risk losing everything to stick up for Auggie. “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13). You see for this middle schooler fighting in school meant the possibility of losing his scholarship and being expelled from school, and even more, losing his friends he had at that school. I’m sure losing his scholarship and schooling meant his future education and possibly even career too. Auggie’s friend laid down his life for him out of love and friendship.
Now I’m not advocating for violence, but who do you care about so much that you’re willing to fight for them? I’m not talking about a physical fight. We know based on scripture that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12). Is there an underdog in your life that is struggling and you go to fight for them through prayer? Or just like Auggie’s friend or my boss, have you shown the Gospel to someone in a real tangible way by giving it all up or extending grace where it’s not deserved?
Two great songs that tie to this message:
The first song is for King and Country’s Fix My Eyes: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iXGuWHb5INk
“Love like I’m not scared…live life for another…take time for a brother…fight for the weak ones…find faith in the battle”
This is a long one, but if you want some good worship lay aside about 12 min and listen to this. My sister sent this to me a while back and then we sang it at her church together…Wow! – Reckless Love (w/Spontaneous) Steffany Gretzinger: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PKooXwwk6bs
Here’s some of the lyrics:
“Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God. Oh, it chases me down, fights ’til I’m found, leaves the ninety-nine. I couldn’t earn it I don’t deserve it. Still You give yourself away. Oh, the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God. There’s no shadow You won’t light up, Mountain You won’t climb up, Coming after me. There’s no wall You won’t kick down, No lie You won’t tear down, Coming after me.”
Father in Heaven, thank you for loving us even when we’re brats. Thank you for sending Jesus who laid down his life for all of us so that we might have a relationship with you. May we realize the true essence of the gospel deep in our soul and extend that same grace to others. You tell us in Your Word that we must lose our lives in order to truly find life. Help us do that Lord because we are selfish and desire comfort, ease, and security. It’s only through the power of Your Holy Spirit living in us that the Gospel will be evident in our lives. So be at work in us. We pray all this in Jesus’ name. Amen
Ask God today who you are to fight for or what you are to give up,