“That is the wonder of all wonders, that God loves the lowly…. God is not ashamed of the lowliness of human beings. God marches right in. He chooses people as his instruments and performs his wonders where one would least expect them. God is near to lowliness; he loves the lost, the neglected, the unseemly, the excluded, the weak and broken.” –Dietrich Bonhoeffer
This is true for you and for me. We are the unseemly, the lowly. These feelings resonate with our clients more personally than we can comprehend. They are perceived as lowly human beings in their communities, even in their families. Before going through our program, many believe their broken identities to be true. But they soon learn that God, the coming of Immanuel, offers hope and restoration.
During the second week of anticipating the arrival of the Messiah during Advent, believers focus on the “mystery” of God and the new hope we find through the Gospel. There is much that is a mystery when we try to comprehend our Savior, the Lord of glory, becoming the poor, seemingly lowly Jesus of Nazareth. Perhaps the greatest mystery, the one we most struggle with, is grasping the truth Bonhoeffer describes, the wondrous love God has for His broken people.
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Our regional coordinator, Francis Odour, witnesses daily the beautiful way this mysterious love God has for humankind completely changes the lives of HIV positive Kenyans. “It’s amazing to see the transformation that happens in a person,” Francis explains. “It helps me wake up every morning…and the greatest joy I have is being able to present the Gospel to people, knowing that they are no longer hopeless. There is life beyond contracting this disease,” Francis explains. “There is hope.”
Like our clients, we were once lost, excluded, and broken. We were captive to fear, with death looming. But the Messiah, as Bonhoeffer clarifies, marched right in. On this day of Advent, let us rejoice in our hope by responding to the depths of His mysterious love in worship as we anticipate the Last Advent, the final coming of Jesus.