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It’s that time of year again! Storefronts are donning pink and red hearts reminding us to stop in and buy chocolaty tokens of love for the special people in our lives.
Often when we think of the ones we love, a list of all the things we adore about them comes to mind. We admire their kindness and generosity or their fun nature and encouraging spirit. And let’s be real. Even physical looks play a role for some. The truth is what makes us “love” them usually boils down to what they do for us or how they make us feel. And there in lies the frailty of human relationship.
Thank God for the standard of love He has given us.
Our Father loved us before He breathed us in to existence. He loves us when we’re selfish, prideful and lost. He loves us when we’re ungrateful, unkind and unconcerned. God doesn’t require anything from us - there’s no possible way to earn God’s love. He doesn’t expect us to behave a certain way. He doesn’t even insist that we love Him in return. And it is no ordinary love that our God lavishes on us. It’s amazing, unwavering faithful love. The Lord Almighty loves you and me so much so that He willingly sent His Son Jesus Christ to be beaten, bloodied and bruised in our place. He allowed Jesus to be mocked and spat on for our transgressions. The unblemished Lamb of God was given over to a humiliating and excruciating death on a cross to pay our debt that we might become pleasing to a Holy God.
But it doesn’t stop there. In His omniscient nature, He thought of everything. Jesus didn’t die only to secure our eternal fate but also to provide a full life here in our home away from home. Full of meaning. Full of joy. Full of Love. God’s Word tells us how to access that fullness.
We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. * 1 John 3:16
Now that we have tasted the real and glorious love offered by our Heavenly Father, we have a duty to share it with all of creation. Now that we understand what it means to truly love, let’s be love; be the Body of Christ. Without preference, fear or exception, show those within your reach grace, peace and kindness - the love of God. Let us exchange the world’s erratic and listless culture of love for a lifestyle of that enduring selfless, sacrificial love with which we were first loved.
That love is free. That love is real. That love is God.
Posted by Joi James.