Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Perfected Love

What was it like for Adam when he realized that he was alone? What was it like for GOD to look down, and realize that HIS creation was not complete? What becomes this notion of love? Is love merely feelings we have for someone both internal and external of ourselves? Is it comprised of our actions, our sacrifice?

Perhaps the most interesting that has come to my attention about love, is the how esstenial it is to humans. I always thought that our essence as humans, what makes us human, extended from our free will. We were endowed with the ability to choose, but the question becomes, to choose what? Material things? Moral choices? People? GOD? Does love fit under that umbrella as well? We have the ability to choose who and what we love, but do we have the choice to not love? Is there anything in us that would allow us to choose whether nor not we have to love? The Bible commands us to love our neighbors, our family, our spouses, the list goes on. It also warns us of things that are not the smartest to love, such as money. We are also commanded in Deuteronomy 6:5 to love the LORD with all our heart and soul, truthfully, all that we are made of. Looking at love in this context, it would seem as if love falls under free will. We have the opportunity and therefore the choice to love, but we don't HAVE to. How vulernable did GOD become when HE placed free will in the mind of Adam? HE knew that by giving man free will, HE was opening the proverbial can of worms. But how did GOD feel when HE saw that Adam needed a companion? We would like to interpert Genesis 3 "it is not good for man to be alone" as man the sex, but perhaps it means man as a whole, as a kind and not as a gender. In that sense, the verse takes on new meaning as we realize that woman should also not be alone, but at the same time realize that it could concern more than just mankind. Man cannot live without GOD. Does that ring true for love as well? Can man not love without GOD? If 1 John 4 talks about perfect love within GOD, then can we only understand love by looking at GOD.

I would feel safe in saying that we all have this vague idea of what love is and looks like. It is a parent sacrificing for their children, a man and woman vowing to stay together till the end, the list can go on. But does any of that come close to perfect love? Perhaps that is why John does not state that there is necassarily a perfect love, but that when we love as GOD loves, then HIS love is perfected IN us. Not by us, not through us, but IN us. John also goes on to state that within this prefected love, there is no fear. Why have we as a people become afraid of love? Is it because we have been hurt so often, that we build a tower to protect our heart, like the tell-tale story of Rapunzel, although we deny even a lock of hair to our hearts for which to help our prince climb up. Instead we expect Him to remove the bricks one by one, layer by layer, until there is nothing left to hide behind or in. The tower is the symbol of the fear we feel. Why must there be a tower? What has happened to our hearts that we no longer feel safe in exposing it; letting it be put to used, and overall loved? We're afraid. The love of GOD is not yet perfectly perfected in us.Will love ever be perfectly perfected in us? Will we as humans, overflowing with sin, ever know what it means to love without fear? To love as GOD loves?

However, I am far from my question of love and free will. How much of our essence is dominated by free will? All of it? Or is there a fight between free will and love? Does love overcome or side with free will in our passion to serve and obey GOD? Perhaps there is no answer to this question, and the only way to reconcile the two is to love because we have the free will to choose to do so. And perhaps to realize that we cannot choose to love GOD if do not have the ability to love. It is with this ability, that GOD becomes perfected in us. Its through our choice to love, to love without abandon.

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