‘God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.’ Romans 5:8 NLT
Human love says, ‘I’ll love you as long as you meet my expectations, agree with my politics, attend my church, or fit into my social circle.’ God isn’t like that. He didn’t wait for us to become worthy before making the first move. ‘God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.’ And when He did, He changed all the rules.
Jesus said, ‘Now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you’ (John 13:34 NLT); ‘Love others as much as you love yourself’ (Matthew 22:39 CEV); ‘Love… without hoping to get anything back.’ (Luke 6:35 NCV)
Love isn’t a feeling, it’s a doing. It’s about giving without counting the cost, without an expectation of receiving in return. When Jesus gave us a new commandment—to love as He had loved—what did He mean? Simply this: true love requires sacrifice. Perhaps it will be a sacrifice of time, a sacrifice of energy or a sacrifice of money. Together these add up to commitment, no matter what our feelings are.
Kristin Armstrong adds: ‘For a while I was angry at love… it wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. It didn’t last. It wasn’t worth it. The deeper it went, the more it hurt. Love was irrational, complicated, elusive and unreliable. And I was done with it. Little by little the Lord healed my heart. My anger…began to fade… Now I…see it’s humanity that scars and strangles love… “Love comes from God” (1 John 4:7 NIV), and it’s worth it, whatever the cost. No matter what damage has been done in the name of love, we’re incomplete without it.’
SoulFood: Est 5–10, Luke 20:1–8, Ps 18:1–29, Pro 26:24–27
The Word for Today is authored by Bob and Debby Gass and published under licence from UCB International Copyright © 2019
Tim Giovanelli together with his wife Victoria have pastored Manly Life Church for over 6 years. It’s a vocation Tim believes was sparked by his first trip to Africa.