Friday, April 10, 2009

The nature of love

Today, my church conducted a poignant and deeply contemporary Good Friday service. It was the kind of hip, emotional programme that really affected me as a teenager - complete with moody lighting, heartfelt music, and dramatic art. It was incredibly well done. Interspersed between each section were short, pointed messages by each of my church's English pastors.

JOHN 3:16 (KJV)

16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

The service provided plenty of time for prayer and reflection, and sharply reminded me of God's love for us. In the final moments, our head pastor imparted four key responses: Accept God's love. Guard that love. Feed off of that love. Share that love.

This simple message struck a powerful chord with me. As school and life have swirled around me, I have predominantly allowed my walk of faith to coast upon that which I had already established. No longer did I have time for quiet times and scripture readings. I believe in God, and I accept his love, but I simply didn't have time to grow.

God's love is immense, so much so that he took on flesh and died for the forgiveness of our sins in accordance with scripture. How should we respond to this love? We should return it. Reciprocate it. Our love, like God's love, should be an active love - a growing love.

I need to return to a life of devotion and faithfulness, to rekindle the light of joy and love in my own heart. If you happen to find yourself in my shoes today, I hope you will too.


Postscript: I recognize too that after walking out of an emotionally charged event or service, it is easy for each of us to have an emotional response. The challenge for us then is to examine that response, and if it is valid, to translate it to more than just a tugging on our emotional heartstrings but a commitment by our soul.

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