As a full-fledged “teeny-bopper” back in The Day, I was a Beatles’ fan from day one.
They had a new sound and a new look. And I shared a fantasy with millions of girls around the world at the time: If only ____ [fill in your favorite Beatle] saw me just once, we would fall madly in love and we would live happily ever after.
If Dr. Phil had been around back then, I guess he would have used his famous expression: “So, how’s that working for you?” 🙂 I did go see them in concert once, but I’m quite sure they never saw me. Given their marriage track record after those initial days, I guess I should just say, “THANK YOU, LORD!”
Why am I even thinking about this? Because they wrote a famous song about love that popped into my head today: “Can’t Buy Me Love.” After I had a conversation with a dear friend about Love. Your Love, Lord.
I know that, just like the song says, “money” can’t buy Love. Money doesn’t have to where You are concerned, Lord. Because You offer Your Love as a Free Gift.
“For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23)
But Love, even for You, isn’t just all about “head over heels” and “happily ever after” notions… is it, Lord? Real Love — Your love — is much bigger and deeper…
“And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge — that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.” (Ephesians 3:17b-19)
Filled to the measure — i.e., totally — with all of Your FULLNESS, Lord? WOW!
My friend seems to connote “love” with total acceptance. Acceptance of the “anything goes” kind. According to my friend, it doesn’t matter what we do or how “comfortable” we remain in our sin. You love us — accept us — no matter what. You love us enough to meet us wherever we are — in whatever “mess” we have made (or continue to make) of our lives.
My friend adds that You essentially don’t “care” about our sin because it’s already “taken care of” — You have paid the penalty. You have forgiven and “forgotten” our sins… even the ones we haven’t committed yet. So we shouldn’t be concerned about our continuing sins, either. Nor should we be distracted by any of the “cultural issues” of the day, because it should just be all about You, Jesus.
My friend was talking about Christians.
There are seeds of Truth in everything my friend said. There are also seeds of Deception. But even one seed is all it takes… isn’t it, Lord?
“You were running a good race. Who cut in on you to keep you from obeying the truth? That kind of persuasion does not come from the One who calls you. A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough.” (Galatians 5:7-9)
Yes, Lord: You love us enough to meet us wherever we are… AND You love us enough to not leave us there.
If money can’t buy us Love, what can? Can “sugar coating” what we say, so we don’t risk ever offending? Can turning a blind eye to whatever we see, even when we see someone heading down a slippery slope toward destruction? Can touting our “grace” despite another’s terrible choices, affirming and encouraging them as they step off the cliff?
I can’t help but believe Your Love is bolder than that, Lord. Because You know what the stakes are. And You don’t want to settle for anything less than Your BEST for us.
“Then we will no longer be infants tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of people in their deceitful scheming. Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of Him who is the head, that is, Christ.” (Ephesians 4:14-15)
I spoke truth today in great love, as You gave me opportunity, Lord. My friend received the love… not so much the truth. I am just grateful for the opportunity You gave me, Lord… to let Your Light shine in what seemed to be a very dark place.
Praying for my friend, even now…