LOVE

I sit with a Picture collage over my desk that is made up of four different photos that show through the word LOVE.  All four of the pictures are of members of my family: Paige, Nathan, Mari Morgan and me.

As I look at the word and those photos I can’t help but think about my family in the pictures as well as what that word means to me.  Love can be a complex word and it is a word that can mean so much to us.  Mari Morgan, my eight year old, loves to watch Disney channel (Jessie, Good Luck Charlie, or any other show).  Nathan, eleven, loves reptiles and amphibians (especially Mrs. Frog, his red belly toad). Paige loves all things Mississippi State Bulldogs, and I love North Carolina Basketball.  All of us love these things, but we also love each other and for the most part we love each other more than we love the things listed above (sometimes I wonder if I am above my kid’s love for the TV and the frog).

But even greater than the love that I have for Paige or the kids, or that love that we have for things; God loves us.  He loves us totally!   He loves us sacrificially!  He loves us unconditionally!   His love for me and for you is greater than we can comprehend.  The four letters of L O V E don’t do His action justice if you put it up against what I say I love (UNC Tarheels, golf, basketball, Krispy Kreme doughnuts).  His love is galaxies away from mine.

So when I say I want you to think about the love that God has demonstrated toward you and me in His Son Jesus; it is truly something you and I can’t fully grasp.  I’m sorry, but we don’t have the mental capacity to wrap our brains around it.  Sure we can meditate on it, and we should.  We can study it in His Word, and we should, but there is no way that we, finite, created beings, can comprehend the actions of God, infinite Creator.  He loves us more than we can ever understand and He demonstrated that love by coming into the world that He created and living and dying for us.

Love from God’s perspective is not just a feeling.  Look in Exodus 31 for an example of how God felt toward His people Israel.  He was ready to wipe them out and start over with just Moses.  This was not the first time this had happened, nor the last for that matter.  God’s feelings did not move His love from them though.  Even when His people were “obstinate and stiff necked” He loved them.  His actions toward them were choices He chose to do.  He did not feel like saving them in some moments, but His actions were that of saving them.  He saved them from the Egyptians, the wilderness, themselves, among others.  God’s action was love.

He chose to love them in spite of their action toward Him. Just as He chose to love Israel, He loves us.  We have sinned and been “stiffed necked” toward God.  We have failed Him and He has acted in love toward us.  Romans 5:8 states that even while men were enemies against Him, He demonstrated His love toward us and sent Jesus.  God has chosen to love mankind through Jesus His Son.  He gave Jesus because He loves us!

This grand display of love is given to drive us toward Him.  This awe-inspiring exposition of love should demonstrate to us just how serious His desires are toward us. Reflect on this love today, spend time this week meditating and reading about God’s love and what all He has done for you.  As that soaks in just a little bit, may we then reach out and share this love with those around us.  As an action point to this find a co-worker or neighbor and pray that God would give you an opportunity to share His love with them.  As you pray keep your spiritual “antenna” up so that you will be ready when He gives the opportunity.

As ministers of the Gospel this great love is to be what we champion to His people and also to those who need to Him.  God’s love is on display, both visibly and invisibly. His love is shown most of all through His gift of Jesus and we are to proclaim that great love gift to all.  As you go about your ministry this week reflect on God’s love for people and may it focus your life on Him and on what He has for you to be about.

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