Thursday, April 12, 2012

Love So Amazing, So Divine

Demands my all.

We often forget that sorrow (suffering) and love are inseparable companions.  On the Cross, where Jesus shed His innocent blood for me...for you...the hymn writer says, "Sorrow and love flow mingled down."  But we have such a difficult time accepting the truth of that love, let alone comprehending its scope.

Sadly, the trouble we have in living our lives as though we believed in "love so amazing, so divine" spills over into virtually all other love relationships in our lives.  We grow irritable with people who suffer long with us amid our seasons of being unlovable. We itch at the thought that love makes demands upon our soul and our lives.  So we all too often choose less love, rather than more, when we need it the most.

I do it.  You do it.

But the truth is that if we knew how lavishly and devotedly we are loved, we wouldn't have the breath to utter even one complaint, or the thought to be ashamed, or to feel put upon by love. Instead, we would be completely enraptured (and rendered breathless) by the beauty of being truly cherished to the core...regardless of ourselves.

If we really take hold of the fact that we are loved beyond measure or understanding, our joy would be uncontainable...and contagious. The closer we come to the great "aha" of the love of Jesus, the the more impossible it becomes for us to be stuck in anger, unforgiveness, or to have unyielding spirits that are closed off to love.  The more we receive love, the more we become love generators.

So, try with all you can muster never to close yourself off from any love in this life. It is your taste of the divine...a portal into the infinite expanse of God's unfathomable love for you.
It is your chance to participate in the distribution of His amazing love.

But you cannot distribute what you refuse to take in...and there's the rub.

Ephesians 3:14-19 is my prayer, today...for me...and for you.  The only real way to live in this life is to love in it...and the only way to love in it, is to live in His love.

When I think of all this, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father,
15 the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth.16 I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. 17 Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. 18 And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. 19 May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

Love so amazing, and so divine, may demand our soul, our, life, and our all...but none of those things really belongs to us anyway. So what's the point of becoming a miser (or a thief) when you cannot logically claim full ownership over yourself and still call yourself a Christian? 

And anyway, it takes far more energy and effort to cling to all we think belongs to us than it does to give it all away.  We've just become numb to our own exhaustion because that's what the pain of not loving and being loved does to us.  We become deaf to the truth of love (Jesus...true love) because we listen and converse with the lies of the darkness.

But here is the Truth; take it into your lungs...into your cells...
10 The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life (John 10:10, NLT).

Do with the truth as you will, but don't say that you have nothing...nothing left inside you, nothing left to offer anyone.  If you say such things, and believe them, it's like saying that you are unloved by the One whose love is incomprehensibly, breathtakingly enormous.  It is a denial of the Cross.  And these things I say to myself as much as, if not more than, to anyone else.

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