IT IS SO TRUE! It is overwhelming and hard to fathom sometimes (...okay, all the time!), and it is an amazing truth that I am often forgetful or negligent of, something that I don't realize enough.
The cross that Jesus hung on was difficult. That is to say the least. It was like dying slowly by suffocation - excruciatingly painful, as well as humiliating. People were hung by nails and left to be seen, mocked, and ridiculed by the public. Not only that, but think of all the spiritual and emotional battles that Jesus was going through. The perfect Lamb of God, God's SON, being punished for the sins of the world, of people who reject him daily, the burden of which were on his shoulders.
But Jesus endured this cross for the joy awaiting Him on the other side of the cross, something that He was aware of in his divinity, something no human would have seen or understood. What joy? US. We are His joy. He saw past the pain, the hurt, the suffering, the shame, the hostility that awaited Him and saw HOPE. He saw US. Every one of us. Each of our faces. We were worth the pain, the hurt, the suffering, the shame, the hostility, worth bearing the weight of the world's sin. We were worth every lash, every mocking/ridiculing statement, every nail being driven through his body, every second of hanging on the cross. He sees us as WORTHY to DIE for, so that our LIVES are SAVED when we believe. While we were sinners, backs turned against Him, He died for us.
There is so much more that I could say or that I am missing (the resurrection... I know), but I was greatly reminded of the awesome love of Jesus at Large Group last night. God is so GOOD, despite how much I turn from Him.
Listening to: Fence Riders, Jimmy Needham