You can do something a thousand times and never notice it. But then one day, you look up, and everything is different.
This past Sunday, we attended the church I grew up in. I’ve probably taken communion at that church… oh… hundreds of times. And yet, somehow… this time I ended up dead center at the altar rail, literally at the foot of the cross.
For some reason, I looked up and was captivated by the plain wooden cross I’ve seen my entire life. It looked different somehow. It was almost like I could see Jesus there looking down at me. I felt my need for Him to do what He did. I felt my sin and His grace. I was gripped right around the heart, all over again, at what it took for me to have the honor of kneeling at that altar, the freedom of being forgiven.
And I realized that all of us kneeling at that altar are in the exact same place. We’re all at the foot of the cross. All the same. All in need of a Savior. We’re not one any better or worse than the other. From the cross, Jesus gave for all of us equally. From His vantage point, every sin and every sinner needed the same thing. His blood. His power. His grace.
We have this tendency to look at ourselves one way and others another way. Human nature drives us to rank sins, to compare ourselves to others, to feel better about ourselves because we’re not doing what someone else is.
But while Jesus knows us all intimately and personally and He loves us all, He also saw sin as sin. And He did what it took to make things right. Yes, it was us that should have taken the action since we’re the ones who broke the relationship, but He knew only He could do it.
And so He did.
And then He invited us all to the Cross, not to be lifted up on it ourselves but to look up at Him, raised to do what had to be done so that we could receive the fullness of Him and His love.