Friday, January 12, 2018

Delighted by Love

Today while we were out walking we encountered a white lab puppy.  His owner had let him out for a bit and the puppy was bounding around the neighbor's yard.  It was obvious he had unlimited energy and probably more curiosity than is good for him.  

I was delighted to see him and immediately thought of Labradors I have known. . .Cairo, Sheba and Remi.  Each has been a delightful, friendly and loving dog.  And each gave as much love, devotion and attention to their families as they received as pets.  Some dogs, especially some breeds, just have a way bringing love with them.  

While some may say that it would be hard to determine if the owners or the pets loved the most, one has only to watch our Sparrow welcome us home to know how great her love is, and how loud!  I would post a video of it, but you would not be able to turn your speakers down fast enough!

While we often underestimate the degree of love our pets have for us, we tend to do that with God, too.  We tend to think of His love as equal to our own, flawed, human love.  But it is not.

His love is never selfish, it is never unseemly, it never rejoices in the pain of another.  His love never tries to promote Himself, but is centered totally on others.

The Apostle Paul described love (charity) this way:

"Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up, doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things; hopeth all things, endureth all things."  (ICorinthians 13:4-7.)
Let's look at it this way.  "Before the foundations of the world," as the Scriptures tell us, God the Father knew that if He created mankind it would eventually mean He would have to forsake His Son on the cross to be the "propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world."  He knew this, and created us anyway.  Why?  Because He loved us even before He created us.

"Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations." (Jeremiah 1:5.)

We should tuck that truth deep in our hearts and minds and contemplate it over and over again.  He knew and yet He created us still.

"Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, 
and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins."
I John 4:10

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