Tuesday, June 16, 2009

The Story of Love

In the truest sense of the word, Love is a story that spans the vast expanse of history. In fact, it is a story that has no beginning or end. We see a beginning only because we have a beginning – Love has always been and always will be. Love is timeless.

Springing forth from Love is a never-ending chain reaction of virtues, the most beautiful virtues in all of creation: kindness, generosity, grace, forgiveness, patience, mercy, compassion, empathy and altruism, to name a few.

Real Love makes possible other things of beauty, because within real Love there is a relationship of unchanging truth that allows complete trust, and thus, rest for the soul. Real Love is always reliable without being a task master. It guides us gently along a path of safety and growth, having our best interests at heart. Love lives in hope and not in demands. Love is willing to do the hard things. Love is willing to wait patiently. Love will endure all hardships, all sorrows and all pain. Love is the great healing power for the soul. Love does not force its way in, but waits for an invitation. Love never condemns, but instead, forgives and accepts. It is a perfect state of being, having all it needs to be complete. Being Love though, it wanted to share this perfection, and so it created us.

Because Love is what it is, Love placed its new children in a beautiful garden full of the perfection that is its hallmark. We wanted for nothing and lived within a beautiful relationship with Love. Love made us the masters of its creation, allowing us to name every different thing it had made. Love even came in the cool of the day to walk and commune with its children.

One very fateful and sorrowful day, being small and having only a shallow knowledge of the infinite depths of Love, like a rebellious child, we decided to try things on our own. Rather than listen to the voice of Love, we chose to listen to another voice. This voice promised many tantalizing things – things we had never known or considered. The decision we made then echoes down the ages to this very day. As the crowning achievement of Love’s creation, we brought our curse of rebellion upon all of creation as well.

We failed to realize then, just as we do today, that living apart from Love, we live and wander, by default, in the dark world of the other voice, a voice that opposes Love at every turn. Many of us have learned to love the darkness, actually, and have joined the other voice in that opposition. We said that within Love is the truth. Outside of Love there is no truth. Without truth, there is no faith. Without faith there can be no way to trust, and therefore, no rest for the soul. Without Love, there is no real life at all. If we would be honest, we would all say that since the day of our rebellion against Love, we have searched for a way back to it and to the life and rest that is within it.

Love, being perfect, had already planned to deal with the predicament of its children. Because Love is perfection, we could no longer live within it in our condition of rebellion. The other voice had soiled us with its manifold curses, things like selfishness, deception, unkindness, indifference, pride, lust and greed. Love cannot coexist with these things. Think about that…let it sink in. To coexist with these things, Love would no longer be perfect, and that cannot be, because above all things, Love is perfect and never changing.

Love’s perfect plan, then, was to send a part of itself to live among us, to become one of us and teach us, and never to yield to the whispers of the other voice, because Love has a burning desire for us to know it and return ourselves to it. In this way, Love could do a marvelous thing! Love, having become one of its children and having lived within its perfection, took upon itself all of the curses of its children and allowed those children to put it to death, along with every curse the other voice had ensnared them in. The child of Love was dead, but that was not the end. Love then performed the greatest miracle of all time! It raised its child from the dead and defeated not only the curses of the other voice, but also death itself. Love’s children now had a way to return themselves to it, unsoiled by all of the curses of the other voice. Love, having also defeated the power of death, offered its children an eternal life when their life in its creation was over.
Obviously, we are the children of this story, and God, as the scriptures point out, is Love. God the Father is Love. Jesus is Love. The Holy Spirit is Love. Everything they do is all about their love for YOU. Love never brings upon us the painful things we often blame upon them. All of them have worked this miracle of perfection just for you, just because they love you. You cannot understand this love fully, and that is not the point.

Love, if you will allow it, will let you believe in it and accept it. All you must do is submit to it – surrender to it – return to Love in humility and sorrow for your life in the darkness of the other voice. Love will not turn you away.

Will you allow Love the opportunity to look inside and find the things that come between you and Him? Are you willing to let Him tear down the walls made of shame, fear and pride that separate you from Him? Can you submit yourself to Him, in love and gratitude for every loving thing He has done for you already?

Will you take just one step of faith and believe for one moment that Love can change you, forever? I hope you can and will, because that one step is enough, and He will take the other steps for you.

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