Primitive religion is not believed, it is danced!

Arthur Darby Nock

Earth's crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God;
And only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit round it and pluck blackberries.

Elizabeth Browning

Sunday, December 30, 2018

love is

"This is all I have known for certain, that God is love. Even if I have been mistaken about this or that point, God is nevertheless love. If I have made a mistake it will be plain enough; so I repent – and God is love. Is love – not was love, nor will be love, oh no, even that future is too slow for me – God is love. Oh, how wonderful! Sometimes, perhaps, my repentance does not come at once, and so there is a future. But, God keeps no person waiting, for God is love. Like spring water which keeps the same temperature summer and winter – so is God’s love. A love that is a spring that never runs dry." ~ Søren Kierkegaard

God is love
We are called to love

But what the heck does that mean?
What is love?

Is love a ‘feeling you feeling when you get a feeling you never felt before”?
That’s hormones

Is love “never having to say you are sorry”?
That’s just stupid

Some have said “love is a verb”
I suspect that is getting closer to the truth…
But still

We tend to think of love in terms of hearts,
And chocolates
Candlelight dinner with a good glass of wine

We blend emotionality with acts that express our passion
And there we are

But that is love as eros, romantic physical love
And we all know that while that is a part of love, it is not love

It specifically is not the totality of love that is God

If we want to know the love that is God (agape)
Then we can look first to the stable
To labor pains, an scratchy straw
To inconvenience
To (as Paul would put it) emptying, a giving up of privilege

We have to look to shepherds
And weird creepy strangers
And openness, risk, and vulnerability

If we want to know the love that is God we have to look to long trips on dusty roads
Mingling with the dregs of society
And ultimately death

Love is not just passion
It is not just feelings of “love” and romantic gestures
It is not just doing nice things for people we like
For people who are like us

It is not all warmth and affection
Joy and peace

Love is seems is hard
Love is changing diapers
Praying over a sick child, while your heart is gripped with fear
It is staying awake, listening for the car to pull into the driveway
It is sitting by a hospital bed, holding the hand of one who is dying
It is cleaning up vomit
Is is being with another in their pain...

It is grief
It is forgiveness
It is reconciliation with one who has harmed you
It is saying yes when you don’t want to,
And saying no when you don’t want to.
It is giving
It is giving, sometimes, more than you can afford

Love is setting aside fear and welcoming the stranger
It is setting aside hate, and looking for the humanity in the person
whose lifestyle, creed, or color is different from your own

Love is vulnerability

Love is difficult and uncomfortable
It is inconvenient

But love is what being a child of God is all about
Love is

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