There has never been as clear a moment of understanding God's love for his creation as when I became a mother. To even grasp a small measure of God's love in comparison to the love I felt for my daughter, and continue to experience with each grandchild I am blessed to be called grandma by; I know I can not even for a mili-second compare my love to the love God has for us. All of us.
I am reading "The Shack" by Wm. Paul Young which was recently made into a movie of the same name (I haven't seen it yet, but as soon as I'm done reading I will rush out to get it). In reading this beautiful book, I gained a lot of understanding of how God sees us as his children -- and what is revealed is both truth and light. On page 138 of the book, the main character, Mack, is talking with the Holy Spirit about how God could allow so much pain and suffering in the world. The Holy Spirit gives him this explanation:
"Mackenzie, evil is a word we us to describe the absence of good, just as we use the word darkness to describe the absence of light, or death to describe the absence of life. Both evil and darkness can be understood only in relation to light and good; they do not have an actual existence. I am light and I am good. I am love and there is no darkness in me. Light and Good actually exist. So removing yourself from me will plunge you into darkness. Declaring independence will only result in evil because apart from me, you can only draw upon yourself. That is death because you have separated yourself from me: Life."
While I contemplate the enormity of this statement, I realize the factual truth of the matter. I also recognize that hate only exists in the absence of love, war in the absence of peace, brokenness in the absence of wholeness.
I look at the picture above with an unknown number of happy faces and notice the one in the center and consider that as representative of my joy. Through the shared relationships with others who also express the joy of their lives, I can be blessed beyond measure and in mirrored response, they too can share in my joy. I smile as I think of Jackson Browne's song "The Pretender," and recognize my desire is to be "a happy idiot" and allow true love to exist in my heart. My desire for everyone is that they would not live a life seeking the negative experience, to remove this or that which causes pain and suffering, but rather to seek that which IS; Light, Good, and Love.
Smile, and the whole world smiles with you.