When you hear the word “love”, what does that mean to you? What images come to your mind? What words would you use to define it? I bet if we all sat down and compared our answers, shared our understandings of love, there would be a few differences. I also bet, that those differences would find root in our various life experiences. How we understand love and how we give love, can be largely dependent on how we have experienced love in our own lives.
This Sunday in worship we will focus on the love of Christ. We will look at how the birth of Christ brings to us a love that knows no bounds, but also brings to us a responsibility to love others as Christ loved us. That can be quite an endeavor and one that requires some preparation.
So I want to extend to you all an invitation. For the rest of this week, during your prayer time, I invite you talk about God’s love with God. I encourage you to really spend time this week turning over God’s idea of love in your soul. Struggle with it, let it wash over you, let it just sit within you. That way, when you come to worship Sunday and we talk about God’s love, the conversation will not be a new one.
God’s love is not an easy concept to grasp and it definitely is not always an easy concept to practice. It takes a daily devotion to surrender ourselves unto Christ and be the directed, rather than the director. It means we practice a love that is counter-cultural, a love that many do not know and some do not understand. It means there will be times where our love will not be reciprocated, where our efforts may come under attack. Living a life directed and based upon the love of God is not easy.
I hope you will accept my invitation to begin this conversation with God and I pray it will continue each and every day this week. Then on Sunday morning, I expect the Holy Spirit to continue to walk with you and help your understanding of God’s love deepen and transform. That is one of the things I love about our Triune God; we are never left alone to grow.
I am praying for each of you as you continue your preparation during Advent. May you feel the love and grace of God each and every day!