Jesus met the messianic expectations of his time with a radical reversal that turned the prevailing understanding of kingly leadership upside down and inside out.
Jesus did not fit the mold of a king that ruled with a sword that would smite an enemy. He proclaimed a kingdom not of the earth, nor a celestial domain. He pointed to an inner kingdom, a heavenly domain in consciousness. He was aware of the light within him and it shone brightly, unfettered by guile, or fear, or outer ambition. He also saw that light in all people, friend or foe, as the "light that enlightens every man and woman who enters the world." This inner illumination allowed him to rule with a sword of Love, which he unflinchingly wielded no matter what came at him. He was defenseless in the face of his enemies; unwavering in forgiveness as his only response to perceived wrongs.
Such a radical love seemed foolhardy and unattainable when Jesus walked this talk on earth. Two millennia of evolution still leave us struggling with the notion that such a love is possible for mere mortals like us. Yet Jesus never intended for us to achieve this exalted state of consciousness capable of unconditional love without help. When questioned by Nicodemus, Jesus told him that he must be born again, born from above. And so must we.
We, of our little selves, cannot see the light in our brothers and sisters who we call enemy. This calls for a holy perception. Only when we can make room for the Spirit to correct our vision and show us the inherent innocence of every person will we behold their light. This is immaculate perception, in which we, like Mother Mary, allow the Holy Spirit to come upon us, let it have its way in our hearts. This is the holy rebirth available to us in every moment and the way we bring light to our world.
Join us this Sunday as we continue our advent series, with the message Unwrapping the Gift of Love.