Living a Life of Love – Greg Albrecht
God doesn’t need us to love him, but he not only takes pleasure in sharing the essence of who he is, he produces his very love in us, empowering us by his grace to pass that same love on to others, in thought and action.
We are loved, not because we are particularly lovable, but because God is love. We often make the distinction that love is not merely one of many attributes of God. The Bible clearly defines God as love. Love is the essence of who God is.
Some miss the point when they think that doing good things and behaving in a moral or appropriate way is the same as sharing God’s love. Our good deeds do not transform us into becoming like God. Good behavior is not one and the same as God’s love.
It misrepresents, distorts and limits God to say or think that love is God. The word “love” and the broad definitions it is given by our culture and society is not one and the same as God.
The love that we see or that we experience from others may be human love or it may be the love of God which he is producing in their lives. The love we see, speak of, sing and wonder about might be entirely from God, or it may be from human origins—so we must be careful not to dogmatically say that love is God.
But, we can absolutely say that God is love. Apart from Christ who lives his life in us, we are not, as human beings, a smaller version of God. We are not, apart from God’s grace, capable of producing and creating the love of God.
God is love and his love is a directional, outgoing dynamic.
God’s love not only flows to us, by his grace, but his love eternally exists and is eternally expressed within Father, Son and Holy Spirit —that same love is then given to us and lived in us through our risen Lord Jesus Christ.
What does God’s love look like— how can we observe the love that Jesus lives out in our lives and the lives of other Christ followers? Here are some examples:
God’s love is real, it is sincere. God’s love is not an act or a religious face or mask we put on.
God’s love is generous and hospitable. God’s love is gentle, kind and affectionate.
God’s love survives all struggles, braves all battles and endures all suffering.
God’s love binds all wounds, heals all heartaches and bears all insults. God’s love shares all things and gives its all to all.
God’s love cares for all people because all people are God’s creation. No one is beyond or outside of God’s love. He loves everyone—the whole world.
God’s love believes the best. God’s love springs from faith rather than from worry, doubt and dismay.
God’s love hopes for the best. There is no night so long that it does not eventually give way to a new day, there is no storm so dark and dismal that the sun will not eventually break through and there is no road so difficult that those who travel with Jesus cannot find their way home.
God’s love wants the best and rejoices when good things happen —as opposed to human hatred where grievances and bitterness cause us to desire evil outcomes in the lives of others.
Grace, not sin, is the focus of the love of God.
The dimensions of God’s love far transcend the outrage at sin that Christ-less religion feels which leads it to invent, fabricate and believe in a hell of eternal conscious torment.
God’s love does not deny hellish consequences suffered by humans, but God’s love insists that hell results from the consequences that humans endure because of their actions, or the actions of others.
God’s love says that painful consequences humans suffer are choices humans have made and endure, whether those choices be their own or some other human who has inflicted suffering on them —but God’s love never condemns or demands pay-back.
No sin, no behavior can separate us from the love of God.
God’s love has no limits or boundaries—all are welcome to walk with Jesus in love on the road we might call the Jesus Way. There are no qualifications or conditions—no background checks. The love of God is offered freely to one and all.
When we are Living a Life of Love the love of God overflows out of us, into the lives of others, so that we are passing on God’s grace—we are ministering to others in the name of Jesus.