Everyday a new horror arises to haunt one’s soul. Death, suffering, and powerlessness challenge even the strongest hearts. The struggle to hold on to hope, courage, and life itself must be won anew against each shocking sorrow.
It is no wonder that many turn from facing the depths of the abyss. Seeking for some relief from constant sadness, a once-sensitive person retreats into private pleasures. It is so tempting to let the truth drift away over the far-off horizon.
A classic Biblical verse tells us that God so loved the world that God gave God’s own Child to save that world. This world of suffering embraced by a omnipresent Spirit of Loving and Giving, a truly beautiful story. If God loves all the world, and knows all its horrors, how does God survive all that grief and mourning?
Indeed, the divine embrace of all suffering without any recoil, retreat, or fear is a staggering narrative. A God that made all things, makes all suffering, feels all suffering, dies all deaths, bleeds from every wound. Not a passionless, stoic detachment from the world’s pain, but intimate omnipresent fusion with every iota of its aching trauma.
If one does not believe in this God, one can still imagine the power of such an infinite radical love. It stands as an ideal to challenge all to step beyond their protective walls. A life that centered itself on the breadth and depth of infinite compassion would be a life with endless purpose.
“…in the Gospel of John we find the revolutionary Christian proclamation that God is love’….To know that God is Jesus, is to know that God himself has become flesh: no longer does God exist as transcendent spirit or sovereign Lord, now God is love.” Thomas J. J. Altizer, The Gospel of Christian Atheism