A Revolution of Love
I wander through my thoughts and I search my heart. When I sit and search long enough to listen to God’s still small voice, I grapple with these questions: Have I studied, emailed, cleaned, and scheduled away my day without praying to my Creator? Have I finished my lists and focused my obligations, but failed to focus my heart? I have noticed that I have spent my whole life striving to be different, and I am exhausted. My heart needs rest and I can only receive this peace from Jesus pouring His love into my heart. When my heart rests and stops racing, I hear God’s voice speak to the desires of my heart. These rare moments when I stop to breathe, stop my texting and stop my work, I am able to receive God’s soft calling to me. He knows my heart personally and personally shows His love for me. This past week, He showed His love for me through coffee dates with beautiful friends and through warm sunsets and strolls with my mother. Jesus pours love into my life. A love that I can get from nowhere else. Jesus’ life is the ultimate story of love, of hope, of freedom. The beautiful and mysterious connection of my frailty and God’s mercy come forth. My darkness is conquered by His light. My sin is destroyed by His Love that breathes life and beauty into my brokenness.
In the beginning, God breathed life into Adam. God was offering life-giving love to Adam. Adam and Eve, were moulded in God’s image and were distinguished from all other creation. They were made to know God intimately and abide in love. But the torrents of sin brought division. Human wants and desires became more elevated than God. Even though this revolt demanded death, (Romans 6:23) God pursues us with life-giving love. This Love was Christ. Love Incarnate descended from heaven to earth, He came to speak life to death. Jesus came to bring a revolution of love.
“This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins” (1 John 4:9-10).
Jesus came to us in a world that had no room for Him in order to destroy death by His life– so that we, who are hopeless without Him, could experience love, forgiveness and freedom. Full and abundant life was given to us as a free gift. Jesus’ love for us is the definition of agape. The world’s love is the definition of eros. Agape serves, sacrifices and endures. Eros is served, takes and leaves. I desired to know this sacrificial love that empties itself and serves relentlessly.
The terms “agape” and “eros” are discussed for their distinct meanings in relation to love. Eros is described as zealous love which wants the other person for itself for its own satisfaction. It is the passion which brings an individual to fluctuate from levels of agony and ecstasy as they search for beauty. The distinction is that eros demands its own self-interest while agape selflessly wants what is best for the other. Eros is also noted as worldly love while agape is known as heavenly love, but eros is not diminished because of this contrast. An example of agape is used to describe the love between parents and their child which is depicted in the parable of the prodigal son or the love between spouses. These examples connect the notion that God’s longing for his people becomes His self-giving which filters to humanity’s idea of loving others. This is how the credo “you shall love your neighbor as yourself” is advocated which ties Jesus’ teachings to his followers as Jesus’ commandment to love demands and promises a calling to know the light of God’s love which accepts the follower for who they are and what they presently do. Jesus does not call his followers to immediately personify His perfect, ideal destiny but overlooks past wrongs and offers a new future for them. We are hopelessly flawed people, Jesus knows that, but He still wants to work with us towards our journey to Heaven.
Jesus’ life is important because he is a presupposition for the faith of millions. Jesus’ life offers a timeless story that people can relate to as there was a man who lived with wisdom by preaching his beliefs, struggling with his burdens, and death. At thirty years old, Jesus Christ made his love revolution known to the world. He proclaimed:
“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to set the oppressed free, to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor. Then he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant and sat down. The eyes of everyone in the synagogue were fastened on him. He began by saying to them, “Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.” (Luke 4:14-21)
The story of Christ captivates us as we are the slaves being set free, we are the blind gaining sight, and it is our stains of sin being washed away in His blood. Jesus leaves behind a legacy, a memoir which future generations have read and used to inspire their own journeys in seeking their vocation, universal truth and a fulfillment of their soul. The historical Jesus is portrayed as a Jewish Palestinian man of low standing, living in a widely illiterate era, persecuted by Roman rule and political conflict, with few companions who could have told His story. The story of Jesus resounds with the human condition, how man’s “soul is willing, but the flesh is weak” (Matt 26:41). Jesus’ will surpassed His flesh, and His courage in the midst of suffering is what holds universal appeal. Jesus exemplifies fortitude as he shows others that it is possible to affect change. Jesus serves as a bridge between human suffering and how that helps one achieve morality. Human suffering brings forth virtue and people relate to the image of the suffering Jesus, and as Christian Nestell Bovee said, “as threshing separates the wheat from the chaff, so does affliction purify virtue.”
The story of Jesus is the story of life. Today, as we move about our routine and fulfill our obligations, I pray that you would join me in being gripped by a sense of wonder and awe for Jesus’ perfect Love that breathes life and brings beauty into our brokenness.