If we know how great is the love of Jesus for us we will never be afraid to go to Him in all our poverty, all our weakness, all our spiritual wretchedness and infirmity. Indeed, when we understand the true nature of His love for us, we will prefer to come to Him poor and helpless. 28

What does it mean for me to “know how great is the love of Jesus” for me? What do I think I mean when I sing that great old 19th Century hymn “Jesus loves me”?

Jesus is a word we use in Christian tradition in two ways. We use the name Jesus to speak about the historical person who taught, healed, was crucified and raised to new life in 1st Century Palestine.

In a second sense we use the name Jesus to signify all those qualities and characteristics that, in Christian tradition we believe were fully embodied in this historical person named Jesus.

To speak of Jesus in this second sense is to refer to the divine power of love at work in the world. It is short hand for the energy of light, love, beauty, truth, goodness, and compassion that is the essence of what it means to be human and that is the force of life that generates all creation.

So, to say “Jesus loves me,” is to say that I trust there is a power at the centre of the universe that is invested in the well-being of all creation. As much as it may often appear otherwise, this universe is bent to the prospering of life. The forces of life are oriented towards the full becoming of all creation.

The events that enter my life all provide opportunities for me to grow more fully into the being I was created to be. Thus, I have no need to fear my “spiritual wretchedness and infirmity.” My brokenness is simply one more vehicle life has provided to enable my heart to break open to embrace “the true nature of His love” for me.

What keeps me from seeing that the universe is organized to bring me to the fullness of life?

How does my attitude towards the realities of my life change if I view them all as the means God has provided to shape me into the person I was created to be?