What’s love got to do with it? Everything!

Remember the song “Can’t hurry love?” Sound’s right doesn’t it?  We have other sayings about love too.  “Love at first sight”  “learning to love you” the Beatles told us we “can’t buy me love.” In the church we Christians love “unconditional love”, but then who doesn’t love that.  “Sacrificial love” has had bouts of popularity at different times and Jesus followers do love “themselves” some “Agape” from time to time.

The popular sequence of love is that I am supposed to get to know you so I can love you.  But the biblical sequence of love is I am supposed to love you so I can get to know you.  I am supposed to love you before I know you.

What!  You smoking the wacky weed and getting all hippy dippy on us Leonard?  Love before sight?  What about getting to know someone?  What about building friendships?  What about not hurrying love?  I am for all of this.  But love only feels hurried when the possibility exists that it won’t arrive or when the expectation is that it must be returned. Love’s pace is supposed to be the same for everyone.  I am supposed to love you before I know you.

The bibles instruction about love is that the decision to love is made when I place my allegiance with Christ because of His love.  “We love because He loved first.” In our world this would be retranslated to say… “we feel compelled to love because He loved first, but we make the decision to love after we get some more info.”  The instruction of John (from the bible) is that as those who follow Christ, were supposed to lead with love, follow that up with love, and then top it off with love.

Love like this changes everything.  Love like this turns our activities into expressions of love verses attempts to find love.  Love like this moves forgiveness from being a primary tool of survival into a powerful weapon in the arsenal of love.  Love like this liberates me from the need to judge others and measure myself in respect to others.  Love like this is proactive, engaging, contagious and God like.  It conquers fear, releases joy, endures pain and is filled with the peace that comes when we live right.

When Jesus said, “love like I love so everyone would know you belong to me” the church said, good idea Jesus but too often proceeds to love like the rest humanity does.  You see, God’s love arrives before relationship and is in fact the catalyst for relationship.

Here is the human sequence for love.

Get to know you… decide if it is worth it to love you… take a few stabs at loving you… love you with strings attached.

Here is the divine sequence for love.

Love you… get to know you… apply tools to keeping love strong… no strings attached.

Let me finish with some words about love from 1 John 4

10This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.11Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

16And 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.

19We love because he first loved us.

Thanks for reading and Off… we go now.

~ by OFF we go now on May 3, 2010.

3 Responses to “What’s love got to do with it? Everything!”

  1. Leonard.

    Great post. Your thought will be my operating agenda in Poland the next few weeks. Loving them before I know them – and loving them because I have been loved supremely.
    Good word. No more sloppy agape.
    BTW – it took me more than 3 minutes to read the post. You took me deeper than I usually go. Spun my thoughts around. Hit me in good spots.
    I’m grateful.

    Blessings,
    Rich

  2. One of the more interesting things about the concept of Love in America is the lack of understanding of the word. We seem to focus on the passionate or familiar loves, but when referring to the love of God and the love He wants us to share, it breaks down a bit. He calls for us to be charitable – and through our charity to humanity, humanity will know we are Christians. I’m ecstatic that BC is taking the more charitable route, the trip to Africa will be an amazing one and those involved directly and indirectly will show a type of charity to the world that will not go unnoticed. Thanks for being the blessing…

  3. And… even if they are your ENEMIES.. love them…!

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