Taking Love Seriously

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“One of the most frustrating words in the human language, as far as I could tell, was love.
So much meaning attached to this one little word. People bandied it about freely, using it to describe their attachments to possessions, pets, vacation destinations, and favourite foods. In the same breath they then applied this word to the person they considered most important in their lives. Wasn’t that insulting? Shouldn’t there be some other term to describe deeper emotion?”
― Alexandra Adornetto

Maybe I missed something in the Gospels, but I cannot remember Jesus speaking of Love as secondary to knowledge of ‘right’ theology or missions. In fact, love cannot be separated from theology and missions or it leaves the latter cold and lifeless. To divide love and place it on one side of the kingdom of God and everything else on the other is to create an artificial forced divide.

Why do so many do this? It is almost like the concept and reality of God being love gets buried at the bottom of the pile in our minds, lost in the thoughts, worries and cares about other (seemingly important) spiritual things.

I have encountered many professing Christians who will wax lyrical about right theology and wrong theology, about conspiracy in the end times, about the rapture and the second coming, the importance of holiness and so on. But when love or grace is mentioned a glazed look comes over these people and they nod quickly before moving on to more ‘important serious subjects’.

Hmmmm….

I always leave these people with an unsettled feeling and a sense of sadness. Why do they respond like that Lord? I find myself asking. Now, I know I have not reached the pinnacle of walking in love, but I know I want to journey there. I desire to realise my full capacity to love God with all my heart, mind and strength and others as myself.

I cannot escape this glaring truth staring at me when I read the word of God or stand in His tangible presence; Love is the axis upon which the universe swings. It is the be all and end all of the kingdom of God. It is first on His agenda. It is who God is.

So, why has speaking of His love and grace become the elephant in the room in some Christian circles? Why does the conversational atmosphere change when it is mentioned?

Mostly, why is it received as something light weight, fluffy and shallow?

There are no deeper waters we can tread as believers than the love and grace of Almighty God.

To be honest it scares me when I see and hear these reactions, it grieves my heart. How much more does it grieve the heart of our Father?  I am reminded how easy it is to search the scriptures and miss Christ, miss the heartbeat of the Father, miss Love.

‘Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.’- 1 John 4 v 7-8

‘And yet I will show you the most excellent way.’- 1 Corinthians 12 v 31 (read chapter 13 to find out!)

Keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life.’- Jude 21

‘But if anyone obeys His word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in Him: Whoever claims to live in Him must live as Jesus did.’- 1 John 2 v 5-6

My prayer is that our Father would constantly re-direct our hearts into His love and Christ’s perseverance.

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