The Ultimate Definition of Love

Daily Reflection : 5/1/19

Sacred Scripture

For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, so that everyone who believes in him might not perish but might have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him will not be condemned, but whoever does not believe has already been condemned, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God. And this is the verdict, that the light came into the world, but people preferred darkness to light, because their works were evil. For everyone who does wicked things hates the light and does not come toward the light, so that his works might not be exposed. But whoever lives the truth comes to the light, so that his works may be clearly seen as done in God.( John 3:16-21)

Reflection

True love doesn’t count the cost; it gives liberally.  A true lover gives the best he has to offer and everything he has for the beloved.  God proved his love for us by giving us the best he had to offer — his only begotten Son who freely gave himself as an offering to God for our sake and as the atoning sacrifice for our sin and the sin of the world. 

Abraham’s willing sacrifice of his only son, Isaac prefigures the perfect offering and sacrifice of God’s beloved Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.  This passage in the gospel of John tells us of the great breadth and width of God’s love. Not an excluding love for just a few or for a single nation, but a redemptive love that embraces the whole world, and a personal love for each and every individual whom God has created. God is a loving Father who cannot rest until his wandering children have returned home to him. Saint Augustine says, God loves each one of us as if there were only one of us to love. Think on that for a moment. His love for you and me is that powerful and that encompassing.

 God gives us the freedom to choose whom and what we will love.  Jesus shows us the paradox of love and judgment.  We can love the darkness of sin and unbelief or we can love the light of God’s truth, beauty, and goodness.  If our love is guided by what is true, and good and beautiful then we will choose for God and love him above all else.  What we love shows what we prefer. Do we love God above all else? Does he take first place in your life, in your thoughts, and actions? If we believe that then how does each day unfold? Does it begin and end with him? Are the intervening moments of each day filled with doing those things that please Him? Do we go ot of our way to see Him in the people that surround us? Do we live each day bringing His love to others?  If we walk in the light of His love, each day will be different. Living in His love is to be filled with His Spirit. Being filled with His Spirit brings us to live a different, other-centered life. Do you do that?

Prayer of The Day

Lord, I know my love for You is far from perfect.  Help me, this day, to turn my eyes and heart more fully to You so that my love of You may be purified, allowing me to love You above all things for Your own sake, because You do deserve my total love.  In my love of You, I thank You for the joy that this produces.  Jesus, I trust in You.

Daily Note

Are you happy?  If not, what do you blame for your lack of happiness?  It’s easy to point and assign blame.  However, we must realize that happiness comes only as a result of our choice to love God with a pure heart of love.  Reflect upon whether this is something you are experiencing in your life.  Ponder the love and affection you have for God.  Think about how strong or how weak this love is.  And remind yourself that, if you love God purely and above all else, this love will order your life so perfectly that the joy you experience will satisfy you above any other earthly consolation.  If you want to be happy, seek to love God with a complete and pure heart.

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