To give truth to him who loves it not is to only give him more multiplied reasons for misinterpretation.
He was the meekest and lowliest of all the sons of men. Yet he spoke of coming on the clouds of heaven with the glory of God. He was so austere that evil spirits and demons cried out in terror at His coming, yet He was so genial and winsome and approachable that the little ones loved to play with Him and nestle in His arms.
His presence at the innocent gaiety of a village wedding was like the presence of sunshine. No one was half so kind or compassionate to sinners, yet no one spoke such red hot scorching words about sin. A bruised reed He would not break--His own life was love, yet on one occasion He demanded of the Pharisees how they were expected to escape the damnation of hell. He was a dreamer of dreams and the seer of visions, yet for sheer stark realism, He has all of our self-styled realists soundly beaten.
He was the servant of all, washing the disciples' feet, yet masterfully He strode into the temple, and the hucksters and money changers fell over one other in their mad rush to get away from the fire they saw blazing in His eyes. In the end, He saved others, but at last, Himself, He did not save.
There is nothing in history like the union of contrast that confronts us in the gospels--the mystery of Jesus is the mystery of divine personality.
|The Celebration Candles|
The prayer said while lighting the two candles:
We praise you, O Lord our God, King of the Universe, who brings forth light out of darkness.
Jesus said, 'I am the light of the world.'
As these candles are lit, and give light to all in the room, light our lives with the great love of Your Son, Jesus.
|Reading the story of Passover|
|The Seder plate|
"Sometimes God allows us to be rejected so we won't accept something less than what He ordained for us...If love has never failed you, how will you ever value unfailing love? If nobody's ever left you, how do you ever value the never-leaving Abba?"
On womanhood (p.53) "Womanhood is a call. It is a vocation to which we respond under God, glad if it means the literal bearing of children, thankful as well for all that it means in a much wider sense, that in which every woman, married or single, fruitful or barren, may participate--the unconditional response exemplified for all time in Mary the virgin, and the willingness to enter into suffering, to receive, to carry, to give life, to nurture and to care for others. The strength to answer this call is given us as we look up toward the Love that created us, remembering that it was that Love that...made us at the very beginning real men and real women. As we conform to that Love's demands we shall become more humble, more dependent--on Him and on one another--and even (dare I say it?) more splendid."
On marriage (p.110) "...marriage is a vocation. It is a task to which you are called. If it is a task, it means you work at it...you hear the call, you answer, you accept the task, you enter into it willingly and eagerly, you commit yourself to it's disciplines and responsibilities and limitations and privileges and joys. You concentrate on it, giving yourself to it day after day in a lifelong Yes. Having said Yes to the man who asked you to marry him, you go on saying Yes to marriage. This is easier for a woman to do, I think...even a woman who has a career when she marries finds it easy to make marriage her primary task, to lay down the career...in order to let her husband have first place..."
Who forgives [every one of] all your iniquities, Who heals [each one of] all your diseases, Who redeems your life from the pit and corruption, Who beautifies, dignifies, and crowns you with loving-kindness and tender mercy; Who satisfies your mouth [your necessity and desire at your personal age and situation] with good so that your youth, renewed, is like the eagle's [strong, overcoming, soaring]!