In our morning devotions today, my husband and I discovered that God has been impressing the same message on both of us, independently from each other. We both came to the realization that neither of us have a true understanding of what God’s love really is. We know intellectually that “God is love”, that the greatest gift is love, that “God so love the world…” and so forth, but we both need a greater revelation of God’s love in our lives.
We were both surprised to find out that God has been impressing this upon both our hearts over the past few weeks - that we must first gain an understanding of what God’s love really is, before we can truly walk in love for others.
The popular Biblical message about love, found in 1 Corinthians 13, talks about love being patient, kind, long suffering, bearing all, believing in all things, hoping in all things, and so on. However, merely BEING and DOING all these things is not love. If I were to go around and show kindness and patience and all the other godly characteristics listed in these verses, it does not automatically imply that I’m walking in love. Love is not conjured up by my actions. It is the other way around. Love comes first. When we have an experience of God’s love in our lives and we bask in His love, seek it, absorb it, and worship Him in it, our actions of kindness and goodness become the overflow from that manifestation of love.
We cannot tie the unconditional nature of God’s love to our performance.
Paul prays for the Ephesians, “ that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height— to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.” (Ephesians 3:17-18)