I Was Thinking…
My passion is to love folks into the Kingdom of God. I strongly believe the world is hungry for ‘unconditional love’. However, this kind of love is impossible unless we have the God of unconditional love firmly at home in our hearts.
My human struggle often has the door of my heart on a swivel. Rather than let the God of unconditional love set up ‘house’ and make a home within my heart, I often keep the door swiveling as if I’m trying to ‘save energy’ at a large hotel. When the door is swiveling, it is easy to love those who agree or who treat me well. But it is beyond my ability to love those who disagree and who treat me unkind.
We use different language to explain this phenomenon of ‘unconditional loving’… ‘Empowered by the Holy Spirit’, ‘Sanctified’, ‘Filled with the Spirit’, ‘Holiness’, ‘Salvation’, ‘Going on to perfection and the list goes on. My simple mind takes me back to a simple song…
“Into my heart, into my heart, come into my heart, Lord Jesus. Come in today, come in to stay. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus.”
It is as Jesus lives and stays in our heart that loving the difficult is possible. I’m grateful for those who have unconditionally loved me. They have made a deep imprint into my soul. They had every right not to love me. But they loved me. And as the Franciscan Monk, Richard Rohr writes, “How you love anything is how you love everything.” Those ‘unconditional lovers of me’ shaped me in ways I didn’t know I needed shaping…and I will be forever grateful!
So, I ask us the question, “Who is difficult for us to love?” Once we’ve identified them, we have then discovered the edge of our spiritual growth. We’ve discovered the next step to be taken. Unless we take the step, we will grow stagnate in our soul growth. It was Jesus who said, “Abide in me as I abide in you. Just as the branch cannot bear fruit by itself unless it abides in the vine, neither can you unless you abide in me.” (John 15:4)
Who’s at home in our hearts? Our love or lack thereof, gives us the clue. “Into my heart, into my heart. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus. Come in today, come in to stay. Come into my heart, Lord Jesus.”