Have you ever thought that people give love the way they understand it? It might be a hot meal prepared for us, hugs given, kind words, gifts, or working hard to provide for us. The way love is given and received is a complicated thing. We all are shaped by our personalities, upbringing, and experiences, from a baby, fast forwarding to who we are now.
As a follower of Jesus Christ, my love should grow and move beyond just my understanding. It begins to become something that defies all explanation and boxes that I can put it in. It transcends how I was raised or my personalities and experiences. It begins to be unexplainable.
Why? Jesus Christ. He is my Ultimate Example. He humbled Himself to become a lowly person. He came from the Throne Room and chose not only to be human, but the lowest form. He gives love in a way that I will never understand and it defies all finite logic. You can’t figure this sort of Love out with your mind. I have to take it by faith.
I was lying on my bed, comfy beneath my quilts, when these thoughts started rumbling around in my head. Maybe something between a desperate prayer for help in all my relationships, and the half dreamlike state I find myself in before the first hot cup of coffee.
What if I could see clearly the why behind how people love? What if I could read their minds? What if I could receive their love perfectly and give love perfectly to each person I meet? It could radically change the way relationships and the world works. However, I can’t do this perfectly in a fallen world. I have to by faith choose to love like Jesus. It isn’t easy, but far too often I use the difficulty of something as an excuse to not even try.
I am super challenged to gaze at the Amazing Love Jesus lavishes on me. I’m challenged to take this love by faith and not try to figure it out. Just to bask under it, believe it, and live through it. Loving that child when they are super difficult because Jesus loves difficult me. Not trying to guess and judge suspiciously the motives of people around me, but to love and care for them with no strings attached. Loving with no fear, because relationships are going to hurt, expose, use, and frustrate me. I’m challenged because Jesus loved without fear. He was ridiculed, abandoned, and killed, yet He didn’t let that hold back His love. Loving and accepting myself as a creation of God, not by some arbitrary standard the culture measures with or experiences that have influenced my view of myself.
I want to love as Jesus loves, a defying Love. This is a “radical” love that rejects all hurt, hate, and frustrations. Love that views people and relationships as the main reason for living, working, and dying. Jesus loves people! Nothing can ever be more important to Him then the saving love and redemption of all people. A relationship between Him and us. I waste far too much time focusing on trivial things and forget His unconditional love. And then I start thinking too much and distrusting too often. I try to figure out all the catch phrases in the Christian culture…tough love, love the sinner not the sin, discipleship, theology, and on and on. Maybe there is an element of truth in them, but the truth comes back to Jesus. Just love. For me, I must move away from rationalizing, figuring things out, judging, or categorizing and begin to love in the raw.
I’m unfinished, and unlovable and yet Jesus loves me with a PERFECT, unending love. He moves, working in me to strengthen me in right choices against my sinful nature and hatred and craziness, but His first ingredient is love. Jesus loves all the bare, insecure parts of me because He is Love. I don’t have to understand any part of this, I just have to believe it. May I love even a fraction like this!