The Boundless Love of God
The Elizabethan poet George Herbert (1593-1633) captured this stinging sense of unworthiness in his superb personification of the love of God:
Love bade me welcome; yet my soul drew back,
Conscious of dust and sin.
But quick-eyed Love, observing me grow slack
From my first entrance in,
Drew nearer to me, sweetly questioning,
If I lacked anything.
“A guest,” I answered, “worthy to be here.”
Love said, “You shall be he.”
“I, the unkind, ungrateful? Ah, my dear,
I cannot look on thee.”
Love took my hand, and smiling did reply,
“Who made the eyes but I?”
“Truth, Lord, but I have marred them; let my shame
Go where it doth deserve.”
“And know you not,” says Love, “who bore the blame?”
“My dear, then I will serve.”
“You must sit down,” says Love, “and taste my meat.”
So I did sit and eat.
Beyond all human faith, beyond all earthbound hope, the eternal God of love has reached down to us, and in the ultimate act of sacrifice, purchased us and made us His own.
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