It has been a very full few weeks for me and my emotions, as is highly evident by my absence. I have been to a place in my heart and mind that leaves me unable to map where I am…as I am totally unsure myself. I have gone down to the depths of fear and worry as circumstances rose out of my control around me…and I have have riden high on the waves as I lifted my hands in praise of the God that rules even when my heart is absent-mindedly twiddling with my faith. I have laughed until I thought my stomach would burst and I have spent moments in deep reflection, pondering what it is that I really believe and trust in…
Last sunday, our Pastor stood at the pulpit and posed these questions:
Are you thankful for God’s love?
Then he stood and just looked at us for a response.
Like anyone would sit in church on a Sunday morning and say “No“, right??….
Then he said something that shocked me…
He said “I bet I can get you to question your original answer by the time I am done speaking.”
He took a good deal of time to discuss our viewpoint of love…
…about how it revolves around “me“…
…what feels good to me
…what hurts me
Human love, in simple truth, is selfish and self-lifting.
Then he gave us this definition of love, from God’s viewpoint:
“Doing whatever needs to be done,
at whatever cost to Himself or to us,
so that we will see and be satisfied with
the love of God in Christ.”
This really made me stop and think so hard that I missed a couple of minutes of his talking…
Do we really grasp the truth of the verses on love in 1 Corinthians 13:
Love is patient, love is kind.
It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.
It is not rude, it is not self-seeking,
it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails.
Do we really grasp that God Himself became human?
That He put aside His holiness to take on the skin of flaw…emotion…temptation…
…that He put aside the part of Him that can’t stand sin
in order to walk a fully blameless life on a sinful planet
in order to hang on a cross,
naked, covered in the sin of the people He loves
in order that they would never have to…
I am not sure that it is possible for our frail, forgetful and often self-seeking hearts to fully grasp the truth of who He is or how much He loves us…
…but I do hope that in your busy, harsh, joyful and normal every day lives you will have a moment like I did.
…a moment that leaves you unable to do anything but stop and try to get it…
to let it wash over you fresh…
to let it halt the beat of your heart as you try to envision the scope of the love He carries for YOU…
…and I pray it changes the rest of the day in which you are given to live.
Happy Thanksgiving to you all…may it be full of reminders of His love
and of the love you have around you. 🙂
Listening to the breath of His love while looking up as always…