Friday, August 5, 2011

God is Love

We say this so often that it has lost all meaning. Think about it: what do you mean when you say that God is love? What do you think of when someone says it to you?
God is love?

If taken to its fullest extent, it must be reversed: love is God. Every time we show love to one another, it is God.
Continue in this train of thought for a time: God is nothing more or less than love, nothing more or less than emotion, nothing more or less than charity, friendship, and trust. God is not a being, but a feeling.

For what elevates us like love? Everyone from two to a hundred suffers agonies and celebrates triumphs because of it. There is no passion quite like it, no emotion that can come near it in terms of its power to shape and hold us. Is it so different from our ideas of God: an all-powerful being or force, which has some measure of control over all of us, which we can never completely understand, and which all of us need in order to be fulfilled? Is it so outrageous to suggest that Love might, after all, be this thing that we have worshipped?

Don’t walk away. I’m not finished yet.

The truth is, love is God. God is the God of emotion, the God of charity, friendship, and trust, the God of interactions, of relationships, of intimacy. Any time that we open ourselves to another person, God is indeed in that openness.

All love is love, as i said before. And while it may be true that only God is capable of a love so deep, so pure, and so strong as to be called “agape”, it is also true that all love springs from this. The most shallow, tainted, and weak attachments have their roots in agape, for God is love is love is God. It’s all the same.

Do not misunderstand me. I am not claiming that God is only emotion; rather i am claiming that this particular emotion is more than just a feeling that we sometimes experience. And do not make the mistake of believing that this idea in some way degrades God. It is not humbling to say that God is love; rather, it is elevating to say that love is God. We are all capable of some form of love. We are therefore all able to see God, and to be God to others.
Yes, love is God. No love is possible apart from God. Perhaps this is the Divine Spark that is in each of us, this ability to love. Perhaps this is what makes us the children of God.

For love is a powerful force, one more healing than compassion and more destructive than hate. Love creates both connections and divisions. Love made whole makes both the lover and the loved whole with it; love broken breaks us.

Love is something beyond our comprehension, something that makes life worth living. How can we doubt that it is closely related to the nature of God? How can we doubt that God is love; and, once we have accepted that, how can we doubt that love is God?

1 John 4:7-19

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed His love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and His love is made complete in us.

We know that we live in Him and He in us, because He has given us of His Spirit. And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent His Son to be the Savior of the world. If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in him and he in God. And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.

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. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

We love because He first loved us.
(bolding mine)

No comments:

Post a Comment