Pastor’s Corner February 2017
I suppose for most folks, February is most associated with Valentine’s Day. President’s Day just doesn’t seem like quite as big a deal, does it? And I guess there are a lot worse things we could focus on than love.
So let’s talk about love, then. What is love? A many splendored thing? Never having to say you’re sorry? Is it all you need? Does it make the world go round? Is it like the moon hitting your eye like a big pizza pie? Is it patient and kind? Is it the greatest thing there is?
What does love look like? Two people staring into each other’s eyes, oblivious to all else? Two people who have endured years of struggle and hardship, yet have held together and persevered through it all? Walking hand in hand on a beach at sunset? Building a home together? Raising children? Saying the meatloaf with the raw carrot in the middle of it is “delicious” because you know it’s the first thing the other person has cooked? Is it being at the bedside as life ebbs away?
Can you really define love at all, or does it fall into that category of things about which we say, I can’t tell you what it is, but I know it when I see it?
Love is so simple, and yet so complicated. So easy, and yet so hard. Fleeting and infinite. It is intimate and personal, but also extrovert and universal. It is emotional, spiritual, and physical, and yet more than all of that put together. Love can bind us together, and love can tear up apart. Love is, well, love, and if you haven’t experienced it, it is profoundly hard to understand what it is, and yet, once you experience it, it’s like you’ve known it all your life. You can never have enough love, you can never receive too much love, you can never give away all your love.
Love is…..what God is. 1 John tells us plainly, God is love. To love is to know in some small way what it is like to be God. To receive love is to receive a piece of God. To give love is to give a piece of God. God is love, and since we are made in the image of God, we are made in the image of love. To give and receive love is to do what God always intended us to do. God made us to live love. God made us because God loves. God loves. It is who God is and it is what God does.
Love is Jesus, born in a stable. Love is Jesus, reaching out in love. Love is Jesus, betrayed, denied, and abandoned by friends, yet never once giving up in any way on those friends. Love is Jesus, hanging on a cross, bearing the weight of all the sins ever done, before him and after him. Love is the life of Jesus, poured out for the sake of the lives of all of us. Love is death taken on, and love is death defeated. Because love is, finally, an empty tomb. Love is life triumphant over death. Love is eternal life, not because we deserve it, not because we have earned it, but simply because God loves us. More than we could ever possibly imagine or comprehend.
This is love. If February is about love, ultimately we need to see this love. Divine love. Eternal love. Love that not let us go, ever. May you always know that God is always blessing you with love. See you in church.