“God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in Him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him.” – 1 John 4:16
Honestly, as I read this verse from Scripture and sit to write a reflection, my mind is distracted by things outside the window. Today is cold. There is no evidence of the sun, and clouds appear heavy. A drizzle falls upon the ground. There’s unrest in our society. I read a bumper sticker filled with hate. I wonder, “in this world, we are like him?” How would things appear if I were to grasp this concept fully…to be like him?
I re-read the beginning of this verse and see it repeated throughout 1 John 4, “God is love.” In verse 12, John writes, “if we love one another, God lives in us.” Then I begin to question even my own heart and its motives. How have I been doing at loving others well? Do my actions demonstrate God living in me? Are these even questions I’d be courageous enough to ask my wife, my family, my friends? Would I want to know their answer?
Friends, from what I can tell, we are living in a very divisive time. Statistics tell us there’s a rise in depression, anxiety, drug abuse, suicide, and divorce. Altogether, this might imply I’m not alone when I question if I’m loving others well. Perhaps I need to understand better this practice of loving well. If God is love, and He is, and we have the ability to be like him, and we do, then will you commit to a journey of learning to love?
Over the next few posts, my hope is to unpack what the love of God looks like. We’ll take a look at Scripture and how God demonstrates his love. I’ll throw out some challenges in how to apply what we learn. For me, if I begin to understand what it looks like, then maybe I could improve my ability to love. So, let’s go about this together and be transformed “to be like him…to be love.”
Today, God, I ask for my heart to be like yours. Reveal in me the places which need to be loved and the places which need to become love. May I learn to love like you. I ask for these in the name of Jesus. Amen.