I’ve been trying to understand a seemingly simple concept as of late. It’s something we talk about a lot… something that hopefully, most of us have experienced at some point or another, something that we hope for, something we strive to show and seek to receive, something we can say without meaning or mean without saying.
Such a familiar word, such a well-known concept, and yet… here I am, struggling to understand it.
I keep coming back to this single thought: Why, God? Why do You Love me? How, God? How can You Love me?
It seems kind of silly, doesn’t it? That after several years with Christ, I’m still asking the same questions.
I’m still at square one.
It seems kind of silly… and I’m tempted to yell at myself for asking these questions – for still asking these questions.
Yes, it seems kind of silly…
Oh, but it’s not.
Because how great could a love be if I could understand it? How amazing could it be if I could explain it? How beautiful could it be if I, with my feeble words and finite mind, could describe it?
My sweet sister, Priyanka, often uses an analogy when sharing the story of our Jesus with others. She starts by asking her audience to think of the best person they know. And as she develops the scenario, she shares her “person.” I don’t understand why, but in all the times I’ve heard it, she always picks me.
I hate that she does.
I hate that she picks me because I know the me inside of me. I know I am not the best. I know I am ugly inside. And yet, she picks me to develop this humbling analogy of Christ’s love for humanity.
Makes. No. Sense.
I tear up every time. She doesn’t know that (well, now she does), but I’m overwhelmed by this every time. Because I don’t understand it – her love for me. I don’t understand how she tirelessly prays for me, I don’t understand why she makes sacrifices for me, I don’t understand why she puts my joy before her own. I don’t even understand why she always takes the time to prepare a snack for me when she knows I’m stopping over after work.
You know the craziest part of all of this? Pri loves me with a human love. She loves me as much as humanly possible.
And as I think about how impossible it is to understand this human love, I realize that I am drowning, submerged, engulfed by a Divine Love of epic, boundless proportions that makes infinitely less sense than Pri’s human love.
I can’t understand human love because of practical reasons. I’m impatient and selfish and always complaining and just plain mean… the list goes on.
But I can’t understand Divine Love because of heart and soul reasons. I am a sinner. My heart is wicked. My mind is sinful. My past is stained. The world is still enticing.
And Divine Love knows it all.
And Divine Love loves me still.
I’ve heard it said that the good things we experience here in this life are intended to give us a glimpse of what is to come in eternity with Christ. It’s true. I believe it. The things we experience in this life give us understanding, they give us a rough outline, at the least, of what we have to look forward to.
But as I sit here thinking about how I can’t even understand human love, I am left infinitely more in awe of His Divine Love for me. I am left understanding less, it seems.
I’m not even at square one anymore… I feel I’ve taken several steps back. Not steps back in terms of knowing Christ or walking with Him. But physical steps back… as one takes when trying to expand ones line of vision.
I step back as if gazing at a mural. I step back to view it in its fullness. I step back to see it, to experience it more fully. And as more of this picture comes into view, I realize there is far more to it than what I once saw before. I realize that it is bigger than just what I see, it is bigger than just what touches my little bubble of existence.
Such is this Divine Love.
Its beginnings are majestic, woven into the fabric of Time itself. Its foundation is immovable, promised in the covenants of old, cemented in Truth alone. Its workings are magnificent, beyond that which is already beyond understanding. Its manifestations are sovereignly ordained, graciously offering us a taste of the eternity awaiting us.
And so I ask, yet again: Lord, why do You Love me? How can You Love me?
I pray there will never be a time in which I fail to see the validity and relevance of these questions. I pray that I will always grow in awe of His Divine Love for me. That as I know Him more, I would be left understanding “less,” so that I may be made thankful for more as I sit in sheer amazement and wonder of more.
I pray that as I take steps closer to Him in heart, I would take steps further from the mural on display before me, that I may see His Divine Love more fully, that I might experience it more wholly, that I may be made aware of just how big His Love for me is.
I pray the same for you, dear friends. Because we have a great Love that can’t be understood. Because we know an amazing Love that can’t be explained. Because we’re the blessed recipients of a beautiful Love that can’t be described even by the most intellectual minds or most eloquent of words.
And that, my friends, is something to be thankful for. That is something to praise Him for.
I will sing of the steadfast love of the Lord, forever; with my mouth I will make known your faithfulness to all generations. | Psalm 89:1