Do you love me?” Jill asked as we climbed the stairs up to our room. “Yes, I love you,” I replied.
She asked again, “Do you love me?”
Did she not hear me the first time? “Yes, I love you,” I replied.
She asked a third time, “Do you love me?”
Now I was irritated. Clearly she was not just looking for reassurance. She was doubting my love. Did she not see all the things I did because I loved her? The way I helped get the kids ready in the mornings? All the chores I did around the house?
“Yes, I love you,” I said with a bit of exasperation. Jill let things rest from there, but as we drifted to sleep, I was still thinking of all the ways I loved Jill. How could she possibly question that?
We were at a really stressful time in our life. We had six kids, and both my ministry career and our tax business (a side gig before there was such a thing) were uncertain. Thankfully, I was headed into a sabbatical, and Jill’s question began to flavor my prayers. “Jesus, help me to love like you.” Over time, that prayer softened into, “Jesus, show me what love is.” I thought, “What better place to learn to love than to study the person of Jesus?”
During that sabbatical, I slowly read through the Gospels and watched how Jesus lived as a person. What I saw changed my life. Even though, as the son of a seminary professor, I’d grown up in a world rich with good theology, I had very little sense of what Jesus was like as a person. What I knew of him was doctrine. I had missed the beauty of him as a person.
I noticed how raw and big Jesus’ emotions were, how much space he left for people, how well he listened, how his body language and who he looked at were so often outside the box. I found myself in quiet wonder, marveling at this man and wanting to know him more. Simply put, I fell in love with Jesus.
My hope behind seeJesus, everything I write, and now this podcast we've just launched has always been to share the most beautiful thing I have ever seen— the person of Jesus. May we see and reflect him before the watching world!