Lent with Julian of Norwich #6 – Bare. Plain. Homely.


And in this vision he also showed me a little thing, the size of a hazelnut, lying in the palm of my hand, and it was as round as a ball…..In this little thing I saw three properties; the first is that God made it; the second is that God loves it; the third is that God cares for it. But what is that to me? Truly, the maker, the lover, and the guardian.

Julian of Norwich, Revelations of Divine Love, Long Text, chapter five

As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love.  If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.

John 15: 9-10

I’ve gone past the point of trying to describe God’s love; how on earth can we. The way I would perhaps describe the love that exists between my wife and I is so deeply personal as to probably only hold real meaning to us. This is the same of God’s love, a God who prefers to describe relationship in terms of a bride being led into the chamber of her new husband. Intimate, exciting, always fresh. Each one of us has such a deeply personal understanding of this that it’s hard to communicate. It often transcends words.

Julian talks in terms of God’s goodness and our simplicity of approach being central to finding meaning in his love. ‘It is a very great pleasure to him when a simple soul comes to him in a bare, plain and homely way‘ she writes. Bare, because nothing is hidden, all is exposed when we come to him. Plain, because our God is one of simple language, and homely, because our shared home is a place of complete belonging. Exposed, simple, belonging.

These are the jewels that we too have to offer the world; vulnerability, simplicity and invitation.

Categories: Devotional, Lent 2019

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