ALL WE NEED IS LOVE
I've never been a big Beatles fan, but I think they were on to something when they suggested that "All We Need Is Love". According to Jesus, this is our main calling, to love one another. We are to be a people who are known for our extravagant love. We are commanded to go so far as to love even our enemies.
As you may imagine, love is not an easy thing to do. I've discovered that love is only easy until you start trying to put it into practice and then you suddenly realize that it costs more than you're willing to pay, it asks more than you're willing to give, and it hurts more than you thought possible.
In 1 Corinthians 12 and 13, the Apostle Paul reveals to us that love is actually the greatest of all spiritual gifts. Without it, we are empty and our efforts are useless. Love, the sort of love we are called as followers of Jesus to share with others, is a supernatural force that we must be filled up with by the power of the Holy Spirit.
Human love is conditional. It is based on the principal of mutual exchange. I will love you if you will love me. But the love of God, the love that Jesus commands us to share, is unconditional love. It is sacrificial love. It is love that is given regardless of attitude or position or what can be gained.
This is the sort of love that is kicking my butt right now.
At the beginning of this year I shared with our House Church a vision for us to walk through "Concentric Circles of Love" where we would begin with our own families, and then radiate outward to our church family, and then our neighbors, our co-workers, and then to the community around us.
I still believe this is God's heart for us, but now I think I realize that, without a sincere miracle from God, none of us will ever get beyond the first circle. I know that I'm quickly realizing my capacity for love is not as deep as I first imagined.
I'm encouraged, however, that Paul's assertion regarding love is that we cannot do it on our own. We are not expected to have within us a love that is equal to God's love. But, if we will humble ourselves and seek His face, and ask God to fill us with His kind of love, He will.
God's desire for us is to be known as people who love like He loves. He has commanded us to live this way. He knows we can't accomplish this by ourselves, so He is faithful to fill us with His perfect love when we admit that we don't have it.
I'm learning now that, every day, I need to ask God for His Holy Spirit to fill me with His Love for others. It's part of the daily surrender, the daily dieing to self, the daily conversion to Christ, that all of us must seek if we are ever to be the people He is calling us to be.
You are loved!