Wednesday, March 18, 2009

"tough love"...?

Oh, what a week... it's been easier than I thought it would be. I've been kind of sad about my family being on vacation without me, but life has kept me busy and unable to dwell on it too much. Brittany is in town, which is a great distraction! =) Love her. And Leland comes tomorrow, so I've had something to look forward to.

I was reading my daily devotional today, and it got me thinking about some things... this is what it said:
"Rejoice in the one who understands you completely and loves you perfectly. As I fill you with My love, you become a reservoir of love, overflowing into the lives of other people."

So, let's break that down. Sentence number one: rejoice in the one who understands you completely and loves you perfectly. The phrase "understands you completely" is enough to write an entire book on. God knows everything about us... yet he still loves us PERFECTLY. Perfectly. There are no conditions, just this never ending love. It goes back to him being "omnipresent"... he's always there, always knowing. I mean, I think even if the people who love me the most, my family and closest friends, knew absolutely everything wrong that I've ever done, especially things that would hurt them, they wouldn't still love me unconditionally. Even if they tried, they're human and they wouldn't forget those things that I did to offend them. Yet I do things every day that aren't pleasing to God and he still loves me unconditionally. That's pretty incredible love. 

Then it says this: as I fill you with my love, you become a reservoir of love, overflowing into the lives of other people. That sentence hit me hard, and it made me ask myself, am I allowing God's love for me to overflow into my love for others? I don't know... I hope so.

Last night I was watching "Across the Universe" with my friend Kelsey. If you haven't seen it, it's a musical using only music by The Beatles... it's flippin awesome. You should watch it. And if you don't like the Beatles, you're a sinner. It's funny, because there's this underlying theme of unconditional love in the movie, and it's a very "secular" message of love. Like, just listen to some of the music, the lyrics are beautiful... Paul McCartney and John Lennon were poetic geniuses. They wrote about this undying, unconditional love in so many of their songs. They even went as far as saying that, "love is all you need." And this is what amazes me: the way the world loves is the way Christians should be loving. I firmly believe that we should love and reach out in a very "liberal" way, and a lot of Christians won't do that. We see the way people are living and we automatically shut them out. And then we wonder what's wrong with the world--maybe WE are what's wrong! Maybe Christians aren't doing what God told them was the greatest commandment--we aren't loving people. Not all of them, at least. We love the ones who we think are good enough for our love.

If we're gonna be honest, we're not even loving other Christians the way that we should. We judge, and we decide what we think people should be like, and we make ourselves bigger than we are, and we shrink God into something that we think He is, when really, we can't even come close to really knowing what He is. He gives us this simple commandment, and just tells us that He wants us to love Him, and love each other, and so many of us aren't doing that. And I really believe that we won't love other people the way that we should until we love Him the way that we should--with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength. So my prayer for myself, and my prayer for Christians is that we would get that straight. That we would fall so deeply in love with Jesus that His love overflows into the lives of others. Because honestly, right now, the world is loving people the way that Christians should be loving them. And if Christians were loving that way, maybe the world wouldn't view us as such hypocrites. Just a thought...

Sounds of laughter shades of life 
are ringing through my open ears 
exciting and inviting me 
Limitless undying love which 
shines around me like a million suns 
It calls me on and on across the universe

-Across the Universe

Nothing you can make that can't be made. 
No one you can save that can't be saved. 
Nothing you can do but you can learn how to be you in time. 
It's easy. 
All you need is love.
-All You Need is Love

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