GodReflection: Guardrails for Living
Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them . . . We love because he first loved us. – John an Apostle
I want to begin his post with a short thought on the changes in my view of kingdom as I attempt to comprehend what it means to live love.
I first learned as a little kid that I wasn’t to pray the Lord’s Prayer, since it included the request “Thy kingdom come.” I was told that when the church began at Pentecost that prayer was answered.
Tied closely to the same rational for some time I saw kingdom as a synonym for church. Later I saw kingdom as the rule of God without much effort on my part to understand its fullness. Since God ruled I had better obey.
However, I’ve come to see a much richer texture of kingdom. The kingdom is of ultimate importance. It is what Jesus came to reveal.
That revelation is found in Jesus’ arrival, his sacrificial gift, and resurrection that set in motion God’s process of establishing His eternal kingdom to work toward making everything new.
As kingdom people this partnership with God is headed toward a new heaven and a new earth totally saturated by the Holy.
This is much bigger than “be a good little boy and you will go to heaven when you die.”
Through my submission to Jesus in death, burial and resurrection I was raised to enter an eternal partnership with God.
The rest of life is to live in love with Him.
The more that any of us two-legged Homo sapiens take on the likeness of God the more we honor Him. The more we honor Him the more our hearts beat in rhythm with the Holy and the more God’s kingdom moves toward ultimate fulfillment of creation renewal.
So how do I live love?
To live love, I must learn to recognize its source. Love is God.
To live love, I must allow God to give birth to me. John says it this way:
Let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 1 John 4:7-8
To live love, I must come face-to-face with my own sinfulness. My destiny under my own steam is death, destruction, eternal darkness, and being lost without being found.
God, the Creator of the universe, acted in a manner that makes absolutely no sense to my pea-size brain.
He made it possible for this piece of decaying flesh and bone to begin to live forever in His presence as a prized possession.
Once again I listen to John:
This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.
This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.
. . . since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. 1 John 4:9-12
Since God lives in me I grow in His likeness. I live love as He lived love—as a channel to others of the love he spread all over me.
And so John erects another guardrail to assure me that I am moving in the right direction Live Love.
Dr. Gary J. Sorrells
A GodReflection on Live Love.