A Devotional Given for PWOC Women’s Bible Study, January 2021
My friend was talking with her teenage son when he shrugged, “Yeah, when I turn 18 I’ll leave and probably won’t come back. I mean, I don’t really have anything in common with you.”
These words seared my friend’s heart, though they weren’t a surprise. She had actually suffered a thousand little cuts like this over the last dozen years. She and her husband had traveled to another continent, picked this 4 year old little boy, rescued him from the abuse and dangers of street life. They brought him home, gave him their name, met his every need and many desires, held him, encouraged him, played with him, taught him, called him their very own. They loved him.
But their love was met again and again with stiff-armed resistance, calloused indifference, a lifetime of mistrust.
Perhaps it can be blamed on bonding issues since the day he was born. Maybe the PTSD brain that continues to be uneasy with peace. Or is it the cultural difference that was never broken through?
We adopted him, my friend said, but he never adopted us.
Our verse in I Cor 13:7, tells us “Love always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”
We are in a time of great turmoil. Even if you don’t believe we’re in the end times, you have to admit we are getting closer to them every day. The war is stirring all around us and the final battle is coming—of good versus evil, of love versus hate. We need this love that protects, trusts, hopes, perseveres now more than ever.
But like my friend’s child, we find ourselves incapable of love. We barely know how to define it and when we do with I Corinthians 13, we are unable to truly do it.
Perhaps we have bonding issues.
Perhaps our brain has been hardwired to never trust the peace and always be drawn to the chaos.
Perhaps it’s our culture—we rarely see examples of true love.
Yet the God who IS love cries, “Come!”
And sometimes He rages and threatens
sometimes He begs and flirts
Or He beckons and reminds
and ultimately He goes, He seeks,
He hunts down
and He crushes His very own Son to pay the ransom.
Sisters this world is dying for love. The Covid-lonely long for it. This divided country demands it. Fort Polk is suffocating without it.
And we are incapable of it.
He keeps calling Come. We have to have His love. We have to have His filling. We have to be His daughters. His empty vessels.
He holds out the adoption papers. We have to accept.
This isn’t an invitation to the lovely ladies society. This is giving up everything you hold dear, being completely emptied, so He can fill it.
And fill it.
And fill it.
It is impossible for us to spread love and truly love even those most dear to us without loving Him. But Romans 5:5 tells us, “Hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.”
So we are on this lifelong quest to love the Lord. We pray. We hear His words. We spend time with Him. We seek out time with fellow believers who show us more of Him. We look all around us for His love letters—the beauty He gives for our enjoyment and to remind us of Him. Even the hard things are reminders to run into His arms.
Let’s do that.
As we pray this morning, will you turn your palms down to let drop the things you are holding onto, the things you need to have gone from your life.
Palms up, open hands, help us consider what the Lord wants to give us, what He will fill us up with. With hands cupped and open to Him, ask Him to show you the love He has for you, that He has surrounded you with.
2 thoughts on “Love Anyways”
Tonia, such love and truth in your words! It’s difficult to see love rejected when it’s true. As one who has lived more than a half century I am still shocked at the disregard for love; for God. We have become calloused, and have traded God for gods.
Thank you Diane, and yes! The world’s true colors are coming out more and more. Oh, I pray we can give up our idols and be filled!
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