The other day I was reading about the Titanic. About how it continues to be studied.
I couldn’t help but think about the disaster that made this ship so infamous. What a tragedy. So much terror. So many lives lost.
So much pain.
The Titanic made its inaugural voyage and sank in 1912, killing more than 1,500 out of the estimated 2,224 people on board. If the Titanic was a person. It would be a mass murderer.
For a great passenger craft; the Titanic was a major failure.
Aside from occasional stories and tall tales, this historic shame was all but forgotten as it remained lost for more than 70 years. It was finally found in 1985 and remains lying still in the location it was discovered.
What amazed many were the things of beauty that were discovered along with the Titanic. Even though this massive mass of rusted metal lay decaying on the ocean floor, there were still many parts of it that were worth salvaging.
Even though the Titanic was a mass murderer. There were still things, deep inside that were worth saving.
I wonder if this is how Jesus can see people?
Let’s look at the Titanic as if it were a person.
On the outside, it looked powerful. It was at the time of its launch, very impressive looking. It looked like it had no flaws.
But when it sank, it was a terrifying and most cruel beast. It was unyielding as it took lives, both young and old. It was a horrifying monster that ripped lives apart.
And yet, there was beauty inside it. Artwork, gold pieces, historic pieces. There were also stories inside it. Moments of great joy and excitement.
Deep inside, there were moments of good intentions.
If we continued to look at the Titanic as a person, we would also need to look at the other people that influenced it. The many people that worked on the Titanic. The many people that would leave their mark on it. Some were caring and encouraging. Some were not.
Some were patient and took their time to build something wonderful. Some made shortcuts and were abusive. Some of the people who influenced the Titanic’s direction in its life were helpful. Some were harmful.
The many things that contributed to the Titanic’s birth, existence, direction, and even demise are numerous, and researchers and scientists continue to explore these many layers.
There are still things deep inside it that are worth saving. Things deep down inside that remain authentic to what this vessel had once hoped to be. There are still things one can appreciate about the Titanic.
There is no way one can ignore the tragic events that took place 107 years ago. If I could go back in time, I would tell everyone to stay away from this dangerous thing. But knowing the facts that I know now, I’m not sure I could hate the Titanic.
In fact, there are many today, that have a great fondness for this historic vessel. It has spawned award-winning movies and many of the beautiful pieces found deep inside the Titanic are considered priceless.
Without minimizing the tragedy of the Titanic, we can still find ways to love it. Because we have taken time and research to look deeper inside it.
Is this how Jesus sees us?
Not one of us is perfect. Each of us has things about us that may not be cause for pride. We all have sinful thoughts and actions. We have all harmed another. At certain times in our lives, with all thoughts and actions fully unveiled, we might be thought of as less than worthy of love. We might be thought of as unforgivable.
But is Jesus Christ able to look deeper inside us?
Is he able to trace each step taken? Each experience? Each influence? Each pain? Is he able to see all the things that have led us from innocent, helpless babes, to who we are now?
Is Jesus able to see beyond the surface of our action and dive deeper down into the many things that have led to our actions?
If we act out in anger, can Jesus also see our sadness?
Can God look beyond the moment of the sinking ship and still love what the boat was meant to be?
Can God look inside a murderer and still see the innocent child?
When I see images of children being handed guns and taught to hate and kill others, I can easily see how a person has been robbed of their innocence.
My heart breaks to think of what life will be like for that child and how that child will be when and if he reaches my age. Will he be a violent monster? And if so, will there be anything left of the child inside?
I think Christ sees the child.
Even when we cannot. Christ sees the child inside all of us.
It’s difficult when we experience people that are destructive, sinful, hurtful. We are not always able to see or are we even given the chance to look deeper than the surface.
Many times, we have no choice but to think of our safety or the safety of others. Many times, we must make sure that no one gets on the ship.
Sometimes we must keep the ship away, so no one gets harmed.
But if God can still see deeper. If God can still see some beauty deep within. If God can still see the child inside. God will still love them. God will love them as they are because the child is still there.
This doesn’t say that God likes the behavior. Just as we do not like to think of all the people hurt by the actions of a harmful person.
God wants us all to be free of harmful and unhealthy behaviors. But God does still see the child within us all and God still fights for the love of that child.
Whenever Jesus would drive out an evil spirit, he would always address the evil spirit and never the person.
“Be quiet!” Jesus said firmly. “Come out of him!” Then the demon threw the man down in front of everybody. And it came out without hurting him. – Luke 4:35
Amid all the chaos and pain, Jesus still sees more.
Jesus still loves more.
Jesus sees all of who we are.
Beyond our unhealthy ways, Christ sees our soul.
Christ sees through the behaviors, the actions, the masks, the steal, and the rust.
He sees us as the children we truly are.
And Jesus loves us just as we are.