Herein is love, not that we love God, but that he loved us, and sent his son to be the propitiation for our sins (1 John 4:10).
God created man with the ability to love and receive love. So love is not only meant to be given, it’s also to be received. Receiving love is equally as important as giving it. Some people struggle in their relationship with God and others because they don’t know how to receive love. Imagine a wife who says to her husband ‘’I know you really don’t love me.’’ Such a woman is unknowingly dousing the love her husband has for her. The man may not be able to explain it, but he’ll gradually tend to love her less. The same will happen to a man who thinks his wife doesn’t love him.
Love has to be believed and received. It has to be acted upon. The Bible tells us about one of the disciples of Jesus named John. He described himself as the disciple whom Jesus loved (John 21:20). This doesn’t suggest that the Lord loved John more the other disciples; He loved them all equally. Any one of them could have placed his head on the master’s chest (John 13:23), but only John believed and received the master’s love enough to do so. That’s the right response to love.
John’s boldness to describe himself as one beloved of the master wasn’t rooted in pride; rather, it was based on complete trust. He caught the picture of the master’s love and dared to believe he was the object of such unfeigned and unwavering love. The Bible says the love of God has been shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit (Romans 5:5). It’s up to you to choose how much of that love you’re going to receive and express. It’s a natural response which, when understood, attracts even more love to you.
Dear father, I thank you for lavishing your unconditional love on me, and for sending Jesus to be the propitiation for my sins. My lips shall praise you, my king, for I see from your word today that I’m the object of your love and the apple of your eyes. I love and adore you in return, in Jesus’ Name. Amen.
John 13:23-25; Song of Solomon 2:4
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