Grace to you!
Yesterday, I introduced the concept of true love. I would want to expand on that reflection by describing what could be called a loving embrace.
Once I was presiding at a wedding of two couples. The woman was strikingly beautiful, but the man, I must say, … (chuckles) was a contrast. But, the love between the two was amazingly palpable. “Beauty” they say “is in the eye of the beholder.”
You may have seen two people whom you thought are opposites fall in love. You wonder what is the mystery behind it. It is simple – they are in love. Period! In love, everything is beautiful; like the law of magnetism, opposites attract. A popular Greek adage says, “To be in love and still be wise is scarcely granted, even unto gods”. “Love is blind” they say.
Did you observe that there is something about love that makes it revolutionary? It is what I may call “ a sense of ownership.” It is what happens to us when we find our heart’s desires; we want to own it and completely possess it. We wouldn’t like to part with it nor allow it to be taken away from us. In that ownership, it’s like we build a wall around the object of our love, and the ownership becomes all embracing.
When in love, do we pick and choose some aspects or the other of the object of our love? I suppose not. Don’t we possess it entirely, good or bad, we seem to care less about the consequences? In true love the pleasant and the unpleasant blend, making the entire object of our love one episode of a honeymoon. Love literally compels us to do the very things implied by our love without ever looking at it as a duty or even a law.
The above analogy is what comes to my mind when I read 1John 4:19-5:4 where St. John tells us that if we really love God, we must love one another; and the proof we love God is that we keep his commandments. Look at it from the point of view of love in the sense of ownership, which I earlier talked about. If we love somebody, we literally like to do the things that please that person. Isn’t it? In fact, it becomes our joy to do so. If God is love, and we are God’s creatures, love of God also implies love of what God has created, because creation is the manifestation of God’s love, or should I say “creation is God’s loving expression.” Creation is born out of love.
If we love God, wouldn’t we love what he says he expects from us, namely his laws and commandments? Wouldn’t we willingly own it, because that is our heart’s desire, not simply as a duty, but because our faith in our love makes our love for what he loves our delight? In love, keeping God’s commandment is a delight, not a burden.
Would you want to measure the extent of your love for God and others? Look at the degree of your love for God’s creatures, especially those who appear unlovable. Measure it also with how God’s law, God’s word is or isn’t your delight. The result may surprise you. But always remember, God loves you.
God love you. God bless you.