“And we have come to know and believe the love that God has for us. God is love; whoever abides in love abides in God, and God in him.”
This love of God is not a one-hit-wonder. God’s love towards His people is forever. He loves us with an everlasting love that will never fail; take offence; throw us off or let us down. His love forgives over and over again, for He has set His heart upon us and nothing or no one will deflect that unending affection. What a privilege it is to be so loved! What wickedness to take advantage of it…
“The Lord appeared of old to me, saying, Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love: therefore with loving kindness have I drawn you.”
When we come into the realisation of that love, it overcomes us and we love Him back. Our love is dependant on His mighty love and our faith and hope is grounded in that same love. The love of God supersedes every other love, for all loves will fail, but God does not fail nor His love cease. He has expressed it in the sacrifice of His dear Son, and also gives us many tokens of that love in our daily life. Maybe we are not aware of them and find ourselves taking God’s mercies for granted, but what a personal blessing to see the provision and love of the Lord in all things. This is the path of peace and blessing as we look expectantly to our Lord each day and each moment. To live in the reality of that love is life and peace.
“Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress; so our eyes look to the Lord, our God, until he has mercy on us.”
As we abide in the steadfast love of God, so we mature as Christian people; become increasingly conformed to His image; become secure in that love and our own love increases and we are obedient. We live our daily life in the presence of that love and that love infiltrates our own heart and spreads out to others around us. We find ourselves loving what God loves and having a heart for the weak and weary, reaching out to them with the message of the love of Christ.
As the realisation of the love of God for us grows, so our love for Him also grows and matures and we manifest the character of God in our life. We become more patient, kind, loving, gentle and faithful. The life of the Spirit in us grows and we become like Jesus. His love in us gives us love for other people and produces genuine outpourings of generosity and provision for those around us in need. Not just money, but time, effort and the understanding heart of Christ. We abide in the love of God and therefore His love abides in us.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”