It is always a humbling experience to publish yet another issue of The Cry, because believing so much in an organization and then getting to in part curate its storytelling content is a true and intimate gift. We receive these stories and go through processes of revision and editing; we lay each page out, choose photos and add graphics. We interact with the content, and inevitably put ourselves in the pages as we artfully place design elements where they look best and seem to tell the stories well. After a while, one becomes intimately familiar with each page, with every face, with every story. This issue, and every issue of The Cry, is fully known.
These few pages of storytelling and reflection have always been special to me, but it wasn’t until this issue on Intimacy that I pondered something new: as clay is to the potter, so is a publication to its editor.
I suddenly sensed an invitation to be fully known by the One we can call the Great Editor — the Author and Perfecter of our faith. He takes our lives and brings them through processes of redemption, bringing out Himself in us and making something even more beautiful out of our stories. This is intimacy, to place ourselves fully in God’s hands and trust that we are safely held and being led to glorious transformation.
We celebrate such intimacy because this is the context through which Jesus encountered us. Immanuel came and moved into the neighborhood to fully know us. Then He made intimacy with God possible for all eternity by His death and resurrection. Because of who He is and what He did, we are now invited to fully know the One who fully knows us. This reality is a driving force of our faith — that the Creator of the universe wants to grow in intimacy with us motivates our hearts to lean into deeper relationship with Him.
What’s more, this increase in intimacy with God implores and empowers us to pursue relational intimacy with others, and this motivates the continuity of the Great Commission. Out of our connectivity with the Lord comes the overflow of love, compassion, and mercy that make true pursuit of people possible. In John 17, Jesus prayed to the Father asking that He would make the disciples one just as He and the Father are one. Oneness is God’s standard for intimacy, and this call to oneness is one that the Body of Christ has often struggled to comprehend and commit to.
But when I look upon Word Made Flesh and the stories in the following pages, I am encouraged to see a group of people seeking to dive deeper into relationship with God and then share of this intimacy with those He has connected them to. We are merely a piece of God’s Kingdom, and yet I see oneness at work among us, and I earnestly pray that He would continue to make us one as the Trinity is one. As we look toward this intimacy, toward putting ourselves in the hands of the Great Editor to be fully known, and are led to oneness with God and one another, let us remember the promise found therein:
“I pray that they will all be one, just as You and I are one — as You are in me, Father, and I am in You. And may they be in Us, so that the world will believe You sent me.” (John 17:20)
Editor of The Cry