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Thursday, December 14, 2017

Advent 12/14: Did Jesus “have” to come?

For a long time it was hard for me to see God as Good and Loving.

I worried, deep down in ways I didn’t have words for, that God the Father sat on a remote and righteous throne somewhere. And that he put Jesus, his very own Son, on the chopping block for my sins.

I thought Jesus had to take the punishment for all the rotten things I’d ever done and will do.

This idea of Father God sending Jesus to take the wrath I deserved did two things…

  1. It made me scared of God the Father. (If He would do that to his own son, what might He do to me?)
  2. It made me too guilt-ridden and ashamed to approach Jesus. (I was a hot mess. He was perfect. He paid my price. Why on earth would he want to be with me? I would want to pound me.)

It was through the teachings of WM Paul Young, author of the Shack, that I began to understand The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in a new and life-changing way.

I began to see that God did not send The Son alone to do the dirty work.

Father God came with and through The Son to connect with me in a personal way. And God sent The Holy Spirit as a guarantee of God’s love and presence.


I used to struggle with the mystery of The trinity.

Three figures? One God? I wasn’t great at math, but 3=1 did not compute.

I prayed and told God so.

I asked God to please help me see it in a way that I could make sense of.

God showed me through a story.

Today I’m reflecting on that story and I felt nudged to share it with you.


Father God and Jesus and Holy Spirit have always existed.

They decide at some point…

They want to share the incredible Love they have between them.

So they fashion man and woman in Their image.

It is perfect for a bit, but man and woman want to do their own thing apart from God. God loves them too much to take their choice away, so God doesn’t.

But man and woman don’t always make stellar decisions and neither do their offspring. One poor, prideful choice after another gradually leads them so far away from God, most of them forget God altogether.

This results in great suffering for God’s Image Bearers- hurting themselves and one another.

Some of them cry out for the suffering to stop.

God the Father, forever in Love with man and woman, wants to be with them like it once was in the garden.

So Father God says to Jesus and Holy Spirit, “Our Image Bearers have wandered too far away from us, we shall go to them.”

Before Father God can even finish the sentence…

Jesus jumps at the chance,

“Send me! Send me!”

Father God smiles. He knows the challenges that lie ahead and says,

“Let’s all go.”

So they load up and come as Jesus, the baby boy.

The Baby Boy grows up.

He brings help and healing to the world. But The Image Bearers don’t want help and healing the way God has chosen to deliver it.

Still, they would rather wander.


The Image Bearers kill their Creator.

But The Creator will not be deterred by their rejection. God’s love for them is too strong. He rises from the tomb they placed him in and conquers death for them.

Still The Image Bearers do not understand.

So Father God says to Jesus and Holy Spirit, we shall return to them.

Before Father God can even finish his sentence…

Holy Spirit shouts,

“Send me! Send me!”

Father God smiles. He knows the challenges that lie ahead and says,

“Let’s all go.”

And so they do.



With you and with me, Their Image Bearers.

Now let Us conceive a new creation—humanity—made in Our image, fashioned according to Our likeness. (Genesis 1:26)

In the beginning the Word already existed. The Word was with God, and the Word was God. He existed in the beginning with God. God created everything through him, and nothing was created except through him. The Word gave life to everything that was created, and his life brought light to everyone. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it. (John 1:1-5)

Also published on Medium.



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