Tuesday, January 12, 2021

God's love language is

 God is love. We hear that all the time. And we apply our own meaning to His love.

It's funny because God refers to Himself as a parent, a lover, a friend, a hero, a protector, a savior...

When you and I talk about true love, ultimate love, unconditional love towards our children, lover, friends, and those we want to help, we talk about concepts like "tough love," respectful, considerate, kind, sacrificial, encouraging, will tell us the truth and stop us from making a complete fool of ourselves, will back us up, in other words...a person who shows their love by their actions not by empty words.

Yet when we talk about loving God, we refer to Him accepting all we do (that's different than accepting us as we are when we open our hearts to His mercy and grace), only talking to Him when we have run out of all other options, doing what we want in spite of knowing it hurts or disrespects Him, pretending He doesn't exist (ghosting Him) when it's convenient then begging for help when we are scared or hurt ourselves. And we call God the narcissist?

How does God define love? The examples I understand best are that of a parent, a true loving parent who expects His children to grow up, mature, to develop character and have a good, long life and prosper in all things 

(3 John 1:2 "Beloved friend, I pray that you are prospering in every way and that you continually enjoy good health, just as your soul is prospering.")

Love as faithful, and faith is understanding authority. Matthew 8:5-11, 13

When Jesus entered the village of Capernaum, a captain[a] in the Roman army approached him, asking for a miracle. “Lord,” he said, “I have a son who is lying in my home, paralyzed and suffering terribly.”

Jesus responded, “I will go with you and heal him.”

But the Roman officer interjected, “Lord, who am I to have you come into my house? I understand your authority, for I too am a man who walks under authority and have authority over soldiers who serve under me. I can tell one to go and he’ll go, and another to come and he’ll come. I order my servants and they’ll do whatever I ask. So I know that all you need to do is to stand here and command healing over my son and he will be instantly healed.”

Jesus was astonished when he heard this and said to those who were following him, “He has greater faith than anyone I’ve encountered in Israel!…Then Jesus turned to the Roman officer and said, “Go home. All that you have believed for will be done for you!” And his son was healed at that very moment.

 God defines love as obedience. John 14:23-24

Jesus replied, “Loving me empowers you to obey my word.[p] And my Father will love you so deeply that we will come to you and make you our dwelling place. But those who don’t love me will not obey my words. The Father did not send me to speak my own revelation, but the words of my Father. 

Can you tell me that you do not expect a child who loves you to show you that by respecting your decisions, obeying you even if they are not mature enough to understand and agree, to believe that you love this child and have their absolute best at heart, and to trust that you are teaching them to practice self control, kindness and mercy so that they can grow into adults capable and practiced at living a mature life that creates joy, fulfillment, contentment and purpose? 

God is love, and He defines Himself as enduring, mature, and kind, even when love must do the hard thing for the true good of a loved one. True love is a strong love, and we don't develop the ability to love with strength and wisdom, knowing when to love with laughter and when to love with boundaries, unless we have first learned authority and obedience. 

1 Corinthians 13:4-11 

Love is large and incredibly patient. Love is gentle and consistently kind to all. It refuses to be jealous when blessing comes to someone else. Love does not brag about one’s achievements nor inflate its own importance. Love does not traffic in shame and disrespect, nor selfishly seek its own honor. Love is not easily irritated or quick to take offense. Love joyfully celebrates honesty and finds no delight in what is wrong. Love is a safe place of shelter, for it never stops believing the best for others. Love never takes failure as defeat, for it never gives up.

Love never stops loving. It extends beyond the gift of prophecy, which eventually fades away. It is more enduring than tongues, which will one day fall silent. Love remains long after words of knowledge are forgotten. Our present knowledge and our prophecies are but partial, but when love’s perfection arrives, the partial will fade away. When I was a child, I spoke about childish matters, for I saw things like a child and reasoned like a child. But the day came when I matured, and I set aside my childish ways. 

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