This post was written by Marta Cortez, a member of the INCM Blog team.
Love is defined in so many ways today. Think for a minute of the many ways you use or have used “love” in your communication. We love our jobs; we love our pets; we love our ice cream. Our modern language has surely adapted its meaning. But the true meaning of “love” originates from our Heavenly Father.
“This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” (1 John 4:10)
Love originates in God. God’s very essence is love. His love is perfect in every sense. It is matchless. Unlike you and me, who have to work at love, God’s very nature is love. From the beginning of time, God loved us. God loved you! Even before you knew Him, He loved you. Sit with that thought for a minute and reflect on that kind of love.
God’s love goes beyond human reason. We humans can often give excuses for not loving someone who has wronged us or hurt us. We may say, “I like them, but I can’t love them.” You see, our human expression of love falls short of God’s sacrificial and matchless love.
Sally Lloyd Jones describes God’s love in such a beautiful way in The Jesus Storybook Bible, “You see, no matter what, in spite of everything, God would love his children—with a Never Stopping, Never Giving Up, Unbreaking, Always and Forever Love.”
That love has been pursuing us since the beginning of time. God’s love manifested in Jesus coming to earth to be born, at the appointed time, to be our rescuer. Love took on human form. Deity became humanity. Love transcended time and space to show us a way out of the mire and darkness of our broken, sinful world. This love is summarized in the famous biblical text of John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
The greatest gift to humanity is God’s love manifested through the birth of the Savior. Love wrapped in swaddling clothes, gentle and pure in a stable, under a star-filled sky.
That love is present in our hearts today through Jesus. That love is ever-present in our darkest times. In our hurts and pain. In our brokenness and struggles.
Perhaps this Christmas, with all that we have encountered in 2020, we are feeling the weight of this world’s brokenness a little more than in years past. That weight is pressing against our hearts, making them heavy and tired, and even sad if we are honest.
Jesus came for that brokenness we are feeling. His love is powerful and bigger than whatever feels too big or unsurmountable to us. May we come to the manger and surrender all that our hearts are struggling within this season. May we remember that nothing can separate us from His love.
Lord, help us to refocus and allow your perfect love to wrap itself around our hearts so tightly that it squeezes out anything that would want to rob us from the love, joy, hope, and peace you came to bring. Thank you for your perfect love. Amen!
Marta Cortez is an innovative leader with a passion for family ministry. She is dedicated to equipping leaders and seeing kids come to know Christ. She has served in many roles across her ministry career. Serving in churches of various sizes, including a megachurch, has developed her management skills and ability to tailor programs and leadership models to accommodate ministry needs. Marta has been married for 37 years and has two beautiful daughters. In her spare time, Marta loves baking, good coffee, and trips to the beach.