The Love of God

During the month of February we traditionally look back at the first time Cupid flung his arrow at us, remembering that special time when we first fell in love with our sweetheart.  Isn’t it amazing the sometimes happenstance way that couples meet?  For some, an almost random series of events bring two people together, and they just connect.  And sometimes like in my case, two people know each other for years – go to school together, go to Church together, never giving a second thought about one another.  But then one magical day it’s like blinders fall off, and you are love-struck!

God’s love is not like this.  According to Jeremiah 1:5, God knew us personally before we even existed. “Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee… “  Even back in the beginning of time, God knew us and he loved us.  God loves with a broader love than even we could love him.

Also, God loves us with a deeper love than we could ever love him.  We love our sweetheart based on our affection for one another, or based on the kindness we show one another.  And the strength of our love can vary to a degree based on how kind – or unkind – we are to one another day by day.  But God’s love is always stronger than this. John 15:13 says “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.”  That’s how strongly God loves us.  It doesn’t vary based on our kindness to him.  It doesn’t change when we are unloving to him.  He knew our faults and our failures but still loved us enough to die on a cross for us.  That’s a deeper love than we could ever give back to him.

Couples give up on each other so easy these days.  I believe many couples today go into a marriage with the attitude of “well, if it doesn’t work out like I expected, I’ll just leave!”  Guess what – it never works out like you expected!  Marriages have good days and bad, up days and down – and even sideways days!   But statistics bear out the fact that when couples base their life on the Word of God, with Christ in the center of their marriage, and attend church faithfully, they almost always stay together to the end.  Yes, it still takes an attitude of sticktoitiveness. (is that a word?)  But this is easier when your priorities are in order.  Love God first, then your mate, then others.  Jesus demonstrated this love to the world.  He loved those who challenged him, and those who persecuted and reviled and beat him.  He loved even those who crucified him.  But they didn’t take his life, he freely gave his life to save us.  That’s a stronger love than we can ever have for him, or for one another in this life.

God’s love is a model to the world.  He loves us broader.  He loves us deeper.  He loves us stronger than we could ever understand in this life, much less match in our own life.  The love of God’s Son is the model for us all.  A sacrificial love that we should strive to demonstrate in our own relationships.  Jesus said, “Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it” (Ephesians 5:25).  Let us all work to show the love of Christ in our daily lives, not only to our sweetheart or our family, but also to a world that needs Christ more than ever.