I enjoyed a free comedy show the other day in public. As I sat at a local place having lunch, I watched a mom's interaction with what most likely was her 5-year-old child. Now, I wasn't eavesdropping but I was paying attention. :)
The scene was this- they were sitting next to one another and he kept hitting her. She didn't tell him to stop but kept asking him to eat and reminding him that, "Mommy loves you." He kept hitting, not eating, and she kept repeating her mantra.
What was glaringly absent was a command for the young man to cease and desist from the hitting. She had a desire for him to eat and be assured of her love but without addressing the very choice he was repeatedly making.
I chuckled but was also saddened by the narrative.
It got me to thinking about the dynamics of love. Not love by an ambiguous or secular definition, but God's. In His holiness, He loves us perfectly. Due to that perfect love, there is pro-activity towards humanity to accomplish His desire. Yet, this pro-activity doesn't mean a lack of confrontation with us, about us and Him.
Romans 5:8 encapsulates this thought- God loves us. God proved it through pro-activity. God's pro-activity meant confronting our issue and need. Our issue and need was due to sin. Sin offends and separates us from God and His desire for us. So for God's love to be qualified as love by His own definition, it had to be demonstrated through confrontation to bring about spiritual transformation.
Friend, let me ask- is this your level of love for others?
For those who God has placed into your sphere of influence who are not professing Christians, are you willing to love them at God's level by engaging them about Christ? Yes, this will confront them with the reality of a holy, exclusive Savior but will also offer them the hope they desperately want; this should be a regular occurrence in our Christian life.
For those who in your sphere of influence that professes to have trusted Christ and follow Him, are you proactively engaging them about spiritual growth? Yes, this will mean asking intentional questions about their heart and moments of exhortation; this should be a regular occurrence during our week.
If neither our relationship with the unsaved or saved are characterized by God's definition of love, perhaps today we need to let the Spirit reevaluate our outlook and action towards either or both.
This is not only the holy option, but it also facilitates God's desire.
- Pastor Paul