How blessed are we to believe in such a God! Bishop Kallistos Ware says “God saves us by identifying Himself with us, by knowing our human experience from the inside.” What better way than to experience death—perhaps the scariest and uncertain act for all living creatures? This action was the supreme action, one that embodied God’s deep love of us. “Crucifixion is the supreme victory, sacrifice, and example. And in each case that victory, sacrifice, and example is that of suffering love” (Ibid.). The realization that the God of the universe came to dwell in this “veil of sorrows” to suffer and die with us, to become like us, and to experience life as we know it is unfathomable. Yet, this is how deep God’s love is for us.
The question we have to ask ourselves is: “how can we emulate this perfect love?” How can we be true to the Gospel message and share Our Lord’s example of perfect love? Each of us has a mission, a vocation from God to not just live our life but to “act justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with our God” (Micah 6:8). We are called to be instruments of God’s peace and to preach the Gospel “sine glossa, sine glossa, sine glossa” without any gloss (St. Francis of Assisi). This includes preaching the message of Christ crucified and of God’s indescribable love for us.
I can think of no more eloquent words than those of Julian of Norwich in her “Divine Revelations”: “Wouldst thou learn thy Lord’s meaning in this thing? Learn it well: Love was His meaning. Who shewed it thee? Love. What shewed He thee? Love. Wherefore shewed it He? For Love. Hold thee therein and thou shalt learn and know more in the same. But thou shalt never know nor learn therein other thing without end… Then said our good Lord Jesus Christ: Art thou well pleased that I suffered for thee? I said: Yea, good Lord, I thank Thee; Yea, good Lord, blessed mayst Thou be. Then said Jesus, our kind Lord: If thou art pleased, I am pleased: it is a joy, a bliss, an endless satisfying to me that ever suffered I Passion for thee; and if I might suffer more, I would suffer more.”