When Loves Comes Running

December 16, 2011 | 21 comments

I heard the pained cries of a fallen child, somewhere near the swing-set. Her howls echoed past the shed, across the long stretch of yard, and through the closed kitchen windows.

“Mommeeeeeeeeee! Help! Help me, Mommy!” she cried.

No barrier thick enough, no gap wide enough, no wall thick enough to muffle the pierced screams of a child in pain.

Arms dripping with dishwasher, I ran. Without shoes. Without a coat. Without second-guessing. I sprinted. I dashed through the door with a singular purpose: to rescue the fallen child. 

Panting, I reached her, cradled her, carried her in. The girl, with her bloody knees and the bruised pride. She’d fallen, and though she could walk, she’d rather be carried, arms hugging my neck.

And so it is with the the children of God, and the running Savior who dashes through Heaven’s door to rescue the fallen.

We were broken and bruised and if we were able to walk, we were no longer willing. 

We cried out. No barrier could muffle our pained cry. No wall could silence the echoing anguish of the sin-sick.

I suppose He could have turned His back, settled deeper into the throne. But He sent a Savior. He didn’t even wait to put on shoes. He came as a child, born in a barn.

Our majesty, amidst manure.
The Savior, breathing first breaths in a stable.

He meets us in a manger.

He connects us through a cross.

Instead of eternal life-sentences in graves, we are grafted into the family. Forever.

He carries us, the bruised and the broken, and whispers, “I’ve come for you.”

He humbled Himself to make a connection, to bridge the unbridgeable gap, to close the widest chasm in the history of humankind.

And that’s what it looks like, I think, when love comes running.


Linking today with Lisa-Jo, the Gypsy Mama, who gives us five-minute writing prompts. We write in community for five minutes — no editing, backtracking, overthinking. Today’s word: CONNECTED.

by | December 16, 2011 | 21 comments


  1. Carrie

    Thank you for stopping by my site. I love yours – the design literally captivated me and I’m not sure I want to leave! What you wrote also captivated me – I’m sure every mother hears those cries – the very distinct ones – and drops everything to race after her babe. Isn’t it amazing how in less than one second, one breath we would sacrifice our own health for our children? I love the image that you conveyed here: “And so it is with the the children of God, and the running Savior who dashes through Heaven’s door to rescue the fallen.” And I connected personally to this: “I suppose He could have turned His back, settled deeper into the throne. But He sent a Savior. He didn’t even wait to put on shoes. He came as a child, born in a barn.” I guess I’ve always taken for granted that God will come for me – and when I read how He could actually choose to ignore my cries and settle onto His throne was eye-opening. Thank you for that, Jennifer! There aren’t many blog posts that I feel compelled to print out and save, but this yours is a keeper! Blessings to you.

    • dukeslee

      This time of year, I am humbled and awed by the fact that God came down in such a profoundly human way. God, who needed His diaper changed. God, who suffered skinned knees. Who got colds. Who had tummy aches.

      It seems almost irreverent to think of God that way, but He not only fully divine, He was fully human.

      I cannot imagining trading the beauty of Heaven for the pain of Earth. For the pain of the cross.

      Thank you, Carrie, for stopping by. It’s a pleasure to meet you.

  2. Linda

    Yes, I think it looks exactly like that. It is love that simply cannot be contained. It is comfort beyond measure.
    So beautifully said Jennifer.

    • dukeslee

      God as comfort, yes… God as Holy Spirit, Comforter.

      What a GIFT we’ve been given.

  3. Angie Vik

    This post’s title is great. Love these thoughts. Like Carrie said above, it’s something I’d like to print out and read to others (crediting you of course.)

  4. Angie Vik

    One more thought. When my son was three years old he was being naughty and ran away from me. I’d had back surgery one month previous so couldn’t move very fast. There was no way I could catch him, but I slowly made my way in the direction he had gone. He was barefoot and ran over some painful stickers. His about-face was immediate. From fleeing sinner to “Mama!!!” He ran right back to me and wanted comfort. If we’re smart enough, this is the way we need to be with God. To recognize in a sticky situation, that the one I’m fleeing from is the one I need.

    • dukeslee

      Angie — This is fantastic. Your words here in the comment box are a beautiful blog post/essay/devotional all their own. I love how you “see.” Thank you for sharing it here.

  5. Traci

    I so loved this and so can relate! Thank you for writing it so beautifully!

  6. nmdr

    that is a really good example.

  7. Jenifer

    Oh this is so beautiful! Just as we run to our hurting children, God runs to us, carries us and loves on us. I love this!

  8. Shelly Miller

    I think your five minutes of writing put us all to shame! Beautiful, just beautiful. I saw every word, right there with you.

    • dukeslee

      Oh Shelly … (Blushes…) … Please know that I had a lot of this in my head already. And I write really fast on deadline. Years and years as a reporter in fast-paced newsrooms.

  9. Bekka

    You had me in tears with your first paragraph. Absolutely beautiful.

  10. Janet

    Oh how I remember the days of skinned knees and bumps on heads. And yes – I ran to their rescue. And cure them with a kiss.

    You’re right God does the same with us.

    Thank you for the reminder

  11. Diana Trautwein

    Holey moley, Jennifer. FIVE MINUTES?? Please tell me you thought on this a whole lot before committing words to screen. I might just have to give up even trying if you really, truly did this within 5 minutes of getting the prompt. Wowza, honey, I am super-impressed.

    Oh, yeah – I love what you wrote, too. Love the truth of it, the beauty of it, the love in it. Merry Christmas, GDWJ jDL.

    • dukeslee

      Hi friend!

      Now I’m blushing again. Here’s the deal… I can write exceptionally fast sometimes. I think it has to do with my many years of being forced to crank out stories on deadlines in some very fast-paced newsrooms. In fact, I had to “write” some of those stories by dictating into the phone, from the scene of the crime or the accident or the political rally.

      Secondly, yes, I had a lot of this one in mind already. As I got the girls ready in the morning, a hundred thoughts flooding my mind about the way God came down to connect with us. … I felt I needed to explain that to you. It’s not really all that good on my own. I was just pumped, was given some good material by the Holy Spirit and then was just ready to write like crazy this time I guess… 🙂 … But thank you. (Blushing, blushing here.)

      Just really grateful, too, for the way God comes running toward us when we fall.

  12. joan

    Oh Jennifer, this is such a beautifully written post with such depth and truths. Yes, I too think this is what it looks like when love comes running.

  13. Danelle

    May I be “sent” not “settled”. To pattern a life after our Father. Amen. I love this. *Thank you*

  14. S. Etole

    To run the right direction when we hurt is such a gift.

  15. Robert Moon

    A mother always hears her child’s cry. God also has his ear turned to our every call!

  16. Jennifer@Adam's Rib

    Somehow I skipped this one, Jennifer. This one resonates with me, the image of a great divide connected by the cross. Just gorgeous this time of year especially.


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