Advent theme of Love through the eyes of Mary…
So today we’re going to talk about love…true love, God’s kind of love, a love that is foreign to the world we know today. Love that is action and not just emotion…notice I said “not just emotion” because love is not emotionless, but it is not primarily emotion. The love that the Bible talks about is a choice. God chooses to love us, not because we are so lovable…we’re not. We’re rebellious…we broke the good world He created and rejected Him in the process. But God chose to love us and He acted… “For God so loved the world, He gave…” Love asks the question, “How can I best serve you?”, not “what’s in it for me?” That kind of love is very different then than what our culture defines as love. You see, culture has what I like to call, a Walt Disney view of love. It’s actually a view of love that goes way back to the ancient Greek philosophers like Plato, who believed that at one time, we humans were two people in one body…4 arms, 4 legs, 2 heads, etc.…and because we became arrogant, thinking we could replace the gods, Zeus split us in half, rendering us less powerful and condemning us to spend the rest of our lives yearning for our other half to complete us. It’s where the idea of soulmate comes from. Somewhere out there there is a perfect match for me, my soulmate, the one who completes me. For you gals, it’s your prince charming. For the guys out there, it’s our Cinderella. When I find my soulmate, then we will live happily ever after. So when the happily ever after isn’t so happy, when the frog you kissed turns out to be just a frog and not a prince, then you have every right to throw him back and kiss another frog. When the glass slipper doesn’t fit, try it on someone else. Love lasts as long as I am happy, as long as my needs are met. Love is really about me. Now granted, that describes a particular kind of love between a guy and a gal, but the selfish aspect of that kind of love infects all of our relationships. I’m friends with those who somehow make me fill good…
Mary didn’t know what she was getting into when she said, “Yes” to the Lord (Luke 1.26-33) and began the indescribable adventure of both parenting and following Jesus. She couldn’t have predicted the great joy and the great pain that it would bring. But she believed in God’s great love for her. She trusted that He was concerned about her good and was working things out to that end. Surely not what she had expected…but she didn’t regret saying, “Yes.”
What’s the great adventure He’s calling you to? What do you need to say “yes” to Him about?
Saying “yes” assumes that you know God loves you…so, do you know that God loves you? Not just intellectually, but do you really know, do you believe that God loves you? He has gone to the greatest lengths to prove it. Sending His own Son to die so that we, you and I, might live.
How are you experiencing God’s love? What does it look like in your life? Can you see His fingerprints in your circumstances? Are you learning to listen to His voice? You can only experience God’s love when you believe He loves you.
If other folks loved God the way you love God, and if they loved others the way you do, how would the world be different? What would that look like? More or less selfish. Remember love is a choice.
“May we experience and share the love of the King this Christmas season.”