hope sign

hope sign

Friday, November 15, 2013

Perfected Love

Can we love even if someone is not loving us the way we expect them to?

What if you don't feel like a priority...can you still love that person?

What if they only come around because no one better is in town...can you still love that person?

Are your expectations too high?

Are you too demanding?

Can you love without personal gain?

How deep do we love?

We hear a lot about love.  Love one another.  Love is of God.  God is love.  I love you, you love me, we're a happy family...(Barney).  I love this or I love that.  Love yourself...love others.

But what is perfect love or perfected love? 

How is love measured?  Is it by what others do for you or what you do for others?  Is it the amount of money spent on someone?

Someone asked me a question.  This someone is very wise and he makes me think when he is around.

"If you can tell me all the reasons you love Bo, then is your love conditional?"  

I had to stop and think about that.  If I say that I love him because...then if he stops that , does my love start to die?  Hmmmm?  I never thought of it that way.  It might not be by his own doing.  I love when Bo wraps his arms around me.  I feel safe and secure and loved.  But, what if he no longer had arms to wrap around me?  Would that diminish my love for him?  I know it seems like a crazy question but it leads us to realistic expectations of how we love.

So many think love is a feeling.  They "love" as long as they are excited, challenged, inspired.  What we don't realize is that feelings come and go.  Sure when it's new, it's exciting and is easy.  That feeling isn't always there.

Love is a choice.

I choose love.  I was telling a young woman yesterday that God is everywhere.  No matter where we are or what we are doing, He is there.  The only place He requires an invitation is our hearts.  He will not enter unless we ask Him too and He only stays until we kick Him out.  He understands that true love is a choice.  To know that we truly love Him, we must invite Him in.

I asked a question above (one of many, I know), what is perfect love or perfected love?  It is Jesus.  He casts out all fear.  He is love perfected.  I cannot truly love until I am living in the love of Jesus.  My human mind cannot comprehend perfected love...living a life without fear of death or judgement.  You don't see me putting on facebook, "Don't judge me...religion judges people...".  I have no fear of judgement because I choose to live in the perfected love of Christ.  His blood covers my sin.  I repent, He forgives.  I must do the same, over and over again.

So yes, I can love without being loved back...Jesus did and does.  I can love even if I don't feel like I am a priority...Jesus did and does.  I can love without personal gain...Jesus did and does.  I choose to love.  When I am able to love like Jesus then I am entering into perfected love.

1 John 4:17-18 MSG
God is love.  
When we take up permanent residence in a life of love,
we live in God and God lives in us.
This way, love has the run of the house,
becomes at home and mature in us,
so that we are free of worry on Judgement Day-
our standing in the world is identical with Christ's.
There is no room in love for fear.
Well-formed love banishes fear.
Since fear is crippling,
a fearful life-
fear of death-
fear of judgement-
is one not yet fully
formed in love.

I pray today that you choose to live in the perfected love of Christ.  We are into the season of Thanksgiving and soon will be into Christmas.  What a better time to enter into a life given to love...A life with Jesus.  

Have a wonderful weekend.  

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