It is said that love makes the world go ‘round. There’s a certain truth in that. It is also said that to be human is to be in relationship; that this is an inherent part of our humanity. Which stands to reason, if God is Trinity and in eternal communion with himself/God’s self, as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
At times we may be hit with this or that, something threatening, maybe connected with a past sin or failure. And we can begin to wonder if God really loves us, to question that love. We know better in our head, from scripture, but isolated things in scripture and in life make us wonder. For example I know God is love, that God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that God loves individuals, I would argue everyone, calling us back to himself. But then we read about judgment in ways that seem severe, here and there in the Bible. Of course this opens up a subject which is not being addressed in this post. All must be read in the light of and toward the end of what we see in God’s revelation of himself in Jesus. We have to try to understand other parts of scripture and indeed all life in that light.
When we are nagged by the question whether or not God loves us, we do well to dwell on Jesus and God’s love in him, preeminently on display at the cross. That this is God’s love which is active for the world is made clear in Jesus’ resurrection. It is an active love, albeit ever cross-shaped/cruciform.
Because we are loved we love in return. The Apostle John says, “We love, because God first loved us.”
I think at times, probably oftentimes at least for some of us, we need to slow down, push the pause button of our lives, and wait on God, asking God to reveal to us, to our hearts, what we know in our heads. We know in part, to be sure, but we know enough to go on that, regardless of how it might seem to us, and how we feel. And yet we need to know something of that special love poured into our hearts by the Holy Spirit. At times we will find it as we go on, doing what needs to be done especially in our relationships with others.
Let’s look to Jesus, to the cross on which he died. God loves us no matter what, seeking to draw us to himself in Jesus. We in Jesus are to live in this love of God together and for the world.
The picture was taken at St. Augustine’s House near Oxford, Michigan, the only Lutheran monastery in North America.