It seems lately that God has been dealing with me about the topic of love. Now I’m not talking about the warm, fuzzy kind of feelings that flutter on your heart when you’re around people that you’re fond of. No, I’m talking about the deep, mysterious, unconditional love that existed since the creation of the world, the love that alone can fill every void in our being, the kind of love that gives purpose to our existence.
I used to think that love was a one-dimensional concept, but as I get further along into my walk with God, I’m beginning to understand that there are so many layers to uncover about love. In my early days as a Christian, I learned to love people the way I thought God loved me, but my understanding of God’s love for me was limited; therefore, the love that I was able to show was limited. First, I had to learn to love myself and be alright with the way I was created. After reconciling myself to my own self worth, I then had to learn to love others with an unselfish kind of love. God was calling and teaching me to extend myself to loving people who were different than me, to love them even when I didn’t feel very lovable or when things weren’t going right in my life. I had to practice being more aware of others’ needs no matter what I was personally going through.
Anyway, I was getting pretty good at loving people, but I also discovered very quickly that it is much easier to love those who are good to us than those who are not so kind to us or downright unloving to us. Thus the more intimate time that I was spending with God, the more I felt challenged to dive into this deeper layer of perfect love. I struggled with walking into this arena because deep down I knew that this meant giving up my pride and dignity to the hands of those hurting me. It didn’t make sense to me, but God assured me this challenge was for my good. After much kicking and screaming to God about this matter, I finally surrendered to accepting the challenge. On my willingness to learn this lesson, God began to teach me how to love my enemies by the examples of Jesus’ life.
You know, just like it was in school… the only way to prove that we’ve learned something is to be tested on that subject. Needless to say, I was severely tested on my newly found revelation. It was only through the practical experience of doing what I had learned did I discover that only walking in this deepness of love will make way for God to work in my life and other people’s lives. The point is, we cannot have perfect love for one another unless we experience God’s perfect love for us. Oh yea, and about my reluctance to the notion of having to give up my pride and dignity to the hands of my enemies, that’s not what happened at all. See, part of the agreement that God made with me was that if I humble myself (set my feelings and agenda aside) and practice only this kind of love, then God would take care of the rest. In doing so, God prepared a feast for me in the presence of my enemies, and He also allowed me to witness the miracle of His kind of love melting away hearts of stone; to God be all the praise and glory!