Love is a funny thing….

So many of us struggle with God’s love.  When we first come to know that we are loved, our reaction is something like, “Oh, isn’t it wonderful that God loves me!”  If we could only stay with that pure, simple, child-like statement!  But often it can become a little distorted and our thoughts of God’s love may actually become more of a burden….

As we live our lives, we like to do things ‘our way’.  I may act out in anger, I may hurt someone, I may be totally selfish, I may put my own ego first (and this was just yesterday!!!).  And then I am reminded – God loves me. 

What comes next?  Feelings of guilt and oppression?  God loves me, how could I act like that?  How could I think those thoughts?  How could I say things like that?  This really makes me feel bad – God….maybe you shouldn’t love me….it might be easier!

Here I go again….confusing the definition of God’s unconditional love with conditional love – the only kind of love that I am capable of. 

The truth is that God loves us ‘in spite of ourselves’.  His love does not depend on me and what I do.  God’s love is a freedom, not a burden.  He loves me as I am – flawed and broken.  He sees and knows me and loves what he sees and knows.  I don’t have to ‘clean myself up’ for him – I go to him as I am and he loves every bit of me!  That is freedom! 

So, at times I am:

 The Prodigal Son

The Lost Sheep

The Lost Coin

How does that make me feel?

I only have to concentrate on the ‘ends’ of those stories…..

I am loved!

Watch your friends…

We walk around with burdens….we’d love to be able to shed our feelings of guilt, fear, worry, etc.  We  have lists and if asked, we’d all love to be free of them.  But, I wonder, have they become the actual fabric of who we are?  Have they become ‘friends?’ 

There may be a subconscious need to hold onto these negative forces because releasing them leaves us vulnerable.  We know what they are, how much of our energy they demand, how to co-exist, so to speak.  Who will I be if I let my fears go?

It’s difficult because releasing them requires us to stand for a bit in the dark, naked and exposed.  We need to re-define ourselves.  ‘I’m a worrier, that’s who I am’ can’t work anymore.

Sometimes we may have to look hard at ourselves and see how much a part of us our fears, guilt and worry have become.  We may have to excise them and that leaves us with open wounds. 

It is then that God comes to us-

to receive those so-called ‘friends’

to heal our wounds…..