Week 38: Thursday – Is Jesus Relevant Today?

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Our Greatest Hunger – Love

“There were many years when I thought fame, fortune, and public approval would bring me happiness. But one day you wake up and realize they don’t.”  – Madonna in interview with Oprah Winfrey

 “I can live without money, but I cannot live without love.” – Judy Garland

In an article entitled, ‘The 10 Most Common Lies in Online Dating Profiles’, the author revealed a study done by the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Cornell University, which found that 80% of online daters lie about their height, weight or age. It says, “Photographs were identified as the single most deceptive element of the person’s profile. Some were unintentionally misleading, thanks to poor camera quality and lighting, but others were purposefully altered through digital editing to be more flattering.”

Some time ago a story came out of a man who filed a court case against his wife for being ugly. That’s right, he sued her because he didn’t like the way she looked, and was awarded $120,000 in settlement money. Apparently she had deceived him in thinking that she was beautiful, when in fact (at least to her now ex-husband’s opinion) she was not. The man said that the woman he married was beautiful with near perfect features. But when their daughter was born, he couldn’t understand why the baby looked so ugly. For months he accused her of cheating on him, and she would adamantly deny it. Finally she couldn’t take it anymore and told him the truth. The fact was, before they met she went through a series of reconstructive and plastic surgeries worth more than $120,000. The child is ‘ugly’ because the she looked like her mother before the operation. The news feature’s conclusion was very insightful, “You’ve got to wonder what kind of man would shun his own child because he thinks she’s too ugly – one who was shallow enough to only love his wife for her looks, perhaps?” What as sad story indeed. Apparently, you can change your face, but you can’t change your DNA. It’s heartbreaking to realize that we invest so much on the way we look, knowing that physical attractiveness fades so much sooner than we care to admit.

Why is it that we try so hard to hide our blemishes? As fearful as we are in others seeing our outward imperfections, surely it’s even more frightening for our darkest secrets to be revealed and exposed. In her article for ‘A Slice of Infinity’, Margaret Manning writes:

“A few years ago, a man had an idea. He decided to start a blog — intended to be a temporary community art project — in which individuals would mail postcards on which was written one secret they hadn’t told anyone. No longer a “temporary art project” this blog is now an online community with over 80,000 members. Apparently, even those with secrets feel the need to share them with someone. Whatever secrets people have hidden, this blog phenomenon highlights the fundamental human desire to be known and seen at the deepest levels.

Yet being truly known simultaneously arouses fear. And it is no wonder that so many keep secrets from even their nearest and dearest. Being known opens us up to exposure, and if exposed we risk rejection — for all of who we truly are is neither beautiful nor lovely… So rather than risk relationship, we hide from others what resides in the dark recesses of our souls. We hide our private secrets and put on our public facades praying that what we really are will never be seen or come to light.”

When Jesus met the Samaritan woman drawing water at a well, He knew that her real thirst was for love. Being married five times and currently living in with a man who wouldn’t even give her his name, Jesus could see the pain of rejection she was experiencing. At length, she was surprised to discover that Jesus knew everything about her, and yet there was no rejection whatsoever. Overjoyed, she finally realized that what she was looking for was not the love of men, which is so limited, fickle, and weak, but the eternal love of God. The real cry of her heart was for the unending, undying, and everlasting love that only Jesus could give. Only Jesus would love her for who she was, despite all the shameful things she has done. Only Jesus would not reject but love her unconditionally. This love would satisfy all the hunger and thirst in the very depths of her soul. Jesus told to her, “Whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

The remarkable motivational speaker, Nick Vuijic, who, despite being born without arms and legs, empowers others to find their completeness in Christ by saying, “It’s not how you look, it’s who you are!” How wonderful that God truly loves us, just the way we are. It is this love that led Him to Calvary’s cross, purchasing our redemption. Our transformation begins with an understanding that He accepts us in all our weakness, failures, and shortcomings. Indeed when all is said and done, in the end all we really need is Him. Christ satisfies our greatest hunger, the need to be loved.

“Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Christ?” – John 4:29

Man From Galilee by LaShell Griffin

Come and see a man from Galilee
That spoke to me and told me things
Told me that if I would only drink
From the waters He, would give to me
I would never have to thirst again.

O, if I had only known, to whom it was I spoke
I would have held my peace, except to make a plea
That He would give to me, this water that I need
To make my life complete
O come and see, a man from Galilee

Verse 2

Come and see a man from Galilee
That spoke to me and told me things
Told me that if I would only drink
From the waters He, would give to me
I would never have to thirst again.

O, He saw inside my heart, the pages of my life
That lay before His eyes. He read through every line.
With every word He spoke I trembled in my soul,
How could He have known?
O come and see, a man from Galilee

He told me that a well of everlasting life would flow from deep inside
If we would worship God in spirit and in truth,
The Savior that we seek, He said that it was He…
O come and see, a man from Galilee

He’s a holy man from Galilee
O come and see, a man from Galilee
A holy man, has set us free.
O come and see the holy man from Galilee

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