I Am the Cross
Union with God is union with Jesus. In John 6:35 Jesus said, “I am the bread of life; he who comes to me shall not hunger, and he who believes in me shall never thirst.” In John 6:56 Jesus tells us, “He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood abides in me, and I in him.” By doing the will of the Father and sacrificing Himself in love, Jesus produced the first of the Bread of Life. The food of self sacrificing love. As we feed our soul on this food of self sacrificing love, the Bread of Life, the love of Jesus grows in us.
Jesus said, “I am the Cross,” and “I am Love.” He is self giving, self sacrificing love itself – the Cross. Nancy has seen a cross with branches coming out of it. Jesus is the vine of the cross and we are the branches from the cross. Jesus said in John 15:5, “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in me, and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”
We have to follow the way to be in union with Jesus. He said, “I am the Way. I died for each one of you. For each soul I died.” By dying to self, He showed us the way. The way of sacrificing self for the one loved. He sacrificed Himself for the love and will of the Father and for us. This is the way when we do as Jesus commands in Luke’s account of the last supper, “This is my body which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of Me,” and sacrifice our will for His will and love as He has loved us by sacrificing ourselves to help please Him who is living in us, in our neighbor and in the least of His children.
Jesus said, “I am the Cross.” The Cross is Jesus and Jesus is Love. If we refuse the cross we have been given, are we not refusing Jesus?
The love of Jesus we see then, is self giving, self sacrificing love. Love that gives up its will, its self, to help and please the one loved. Then, the Holy Spirit is leading us in God’s will to do as He commanded, that is, “love Me as I have loved you.”
Therefore, the more we are in union with the self giving, self sacrificing love of the cross, of Jesus Himself, the more we are in union with Jesus. Again, in John 15:5 Jesus said, “He who abides in me, and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” In John 15:12-13 Jesus tells us, “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”
When we love our neighbor with the self sacrificing love of Jesus, which is the cross, as He commanded, we abide in Him. His love lives in us and the more we do this the more union we have with Jesus.
As we feed on the Bread of Life, the self sacrificing love, that is Jesus and let Him live in us, surrendering our will to His will, His self sacrificing love lives and grows in us. The less of us, the more of Jesus.
Jesus said, “Drink of this cup and share My Life within you with others.” When we recognize that He is living in our neighbor and we love Him in our neighbor as He has loved us, our neighbor is fed on the self sacrificing love of Jesus in us, the Bread of Life. Love [Jesus] is returned love, all are joined in love, in union with God.
However, we must keep in mind what we do towards our neighbor, our actions, words and deeds, either feeds them the Bread of Life or the ways of the world.