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. We love because he first loved us. (1 John 4:9-10, 19 NIV)
"This is love" - John makes a statement which he is very clear about. He is about to define love for us based on his long and intimate personal experience. I feel as if John is so clear about this that he is not expecting there to be any dispute.
"This is love" - not that we love, but that we are loved. Love originates in the heart of the Father. In fact, it was only because of love that the Father sent the Son to bring us back to himself. He didn't want us to live in independence and rebellion; he wanted a family. He therefore did everything possible to bring us back into that family.
We all want to be more loving of ourselves and of others. No matter how hard we try we will not be able to manage this without first recognising that we need to be loved. We don't receive love in order to give it away. We receive love because we need to receive it for ourselves.
As we are loved it is an inevitable consequence that the love we have received will begin to overflow and touch others. The only way to be more loving is to be loved. We often quote these verses and seem to recognise love comes from the Father. What we fail to do is put it into practice, the practice of being loved.
A simple prayer I often pray and I encourage you pray it too. You can pray this anywhere and at any time of the day.
"Father, will you fill me with your love".
A Father to YOU is a signpost to the heart of the Perfect Father. When we became Christians we were given the right to become children of God (John 1:12). Sadly, many of us fail to take up that right and instead continue to live as slaves or orphans. But our true destiny is being sons and daughters who have a permanent place in the Father's family. This blog is an encouragement to help you know who God really is and who you really are. Click here to subscribe.