Sekai no Hikari: Light of the World

"You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden…In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven."

Amazing Grace

on May 1, 2013

        In my first post, I mentioned Avatar: The Last Airbender as a show that reminds me a lot of Christianity. One of my favorite scenes in the entire show is in the final episode. I’ll post a link to the scene, and a transcription of it, below.

        The characters involved in this part of the show are Zuko, a prince who was banished by his father, and Iroh, his uncle. Here, Zuko is apologizing to Iroh for a lifetime of evil.

<Iroh wakes up and sees Zuko>

Zuko: Uncle, I know you must have mixed feelings about seeing me. But I want you to know, I am so, so sorry, Uncle. I am so sorry and ashamed of what I did. I don’t know how I can ever make it up to you. But I –

<Iroh hugs him>

Zuko: How can you forgive me so easily? I thought you would be furious with me!

Iroh: I was never angry with you. I was sad, because I was afraid you’d lost your way.

Zuko: I did lose my way.

Iroh: But you found it again.

        I think this paints a picture of God’s grace that many of us desperately need to see. We all sin and fall short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23), but when we sin, God is not like a harsh taskmaster in the sky. The other day, while doing a project, I came across something describing God as a “homophobic sky fairy.” Whoever wrote that has it all wrong. God is not afraid of anyone’s sin. If we are babies with dirty diapers, He holds us close, because He sees us as being worth enduring the stench of a dirty diaper. Even people who seem beyond redemption, even to the most tolerant person out there, are still valuable to God.

        He grieves over those who have lost their way. For every tear we cry, and for every ounce of energy we expend trying to find our own way, He cries a hundred tears, and devotes his boundless stores of energy to taking all the steps necessary to woo us back to Him. Yet, he leaves the final choice up to us, because he wants us to be free. He loves us with a love that surpasses all boundaries of sin, all laws of this world, and all the burdens of guilt we heap upon ourselves.

        And for those of us who find our way, guided by Jesus, God celebrates, and welcomes back with open arms. He calls us. He says, “Come. I can clean your mess. I can wash your stains. Break your chains. My grace is sufficient.” God is not angry with us. He wants us to return to him. He loves us with an everlasting love.


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