DAY 89 //

CREATED TO LOVE

“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends.”

// 1 Corinthians 13:4-8a

The heart of every man, woman, and child groans with the desire to love and be loved. This desire manifests itself in different ways, but the root is the same: it is a desire ingrained in our nature because it is a reflection of our Heavenly Father. It is the example of a gracious God, obsessed with restoring our hearts. Created in His image, mankind bears the imprint of this loving Creator. The Bible beautifully and clearly details His nature, pointing to a love that goes beyond simple affection and revealing the root of humanity’s greatest desire – restoration of the intended relationship in the Garden.

Since we are created in God’s image and He is in fact the embodiment of love, why then are these characteristics not preeminent in our lives? It’s simple: the nature of sin blinds us to the nature of a perfect Creator. But God, demonstrating His character, sent Jesus Christ to be the ultimate example of love – by dying on the cross for our sins, He has offered us a way to be restored to our original design. Through Christ, we are given righteousness, and the same Spirit that exemplifies that love.

We were given Jesus that we might know love, the Word to teach us love, the Spirit to experience love and community to dispense love. Therefore, because we were created in the image of God and have been restored to Him through the cross, we can now demonstrate the same love to all of creation. We can do this by daily reliance on the Holy Spirit; submission vertically leads to application horizontally. We can love those around us unconditionally, patiently and kindly – never growing jealous of them, irritated by them or celebrating their sin, but rather  we encourage them in righteousness. God’s Holy Spirit leads us to love others with hope, faith, and courage without end.

// Colby Thelen