*Photo credit: Julie Ayers via creationswap.com
Notice a theme in chapter three? You have to admit, it is hard to miss. Its right there in verse 1:
“See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!”
Children of God. Let that sink it. Carry that around with you today. Live into that reality. It is a big deal. It is what Paul was getting at in his writings when he says that we are co-heirs with Christ. We are part of the family of God.
Albeit, if you’re anything like me it certainly doesn’t always feel like it. There are plenty of times I mess up and do the wrong thing. Or say the wrong thing. Or don’t do the right thing. Or don’t say the right thing. Or…I think you get the picture.
But thankfully our reconciliation with God in Christ isn’t based on what we do or don’t do. It’s based on Christ. Grace freely given. John almost anticipates this when he says in verse 20:
“If our hearts condemn us, we know that God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.”
It doesn’t always feel like we’re nailing the Christian life. And that is O.K. God is bigger than our feelings and our worries and our insecurities. In fact, the love John is speaking of is bigger than any of those things too. Because love isn’t just a feeling. It is more than that. It is action. Verses 17 and 18 say:
“If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.”
True love moves us to act. It isn’t just a feeling or a thought or some words we say. It affects how we live in tangible ways.
My prayer for you today is that your love for God and others may move you to act on their behalf in the world. That your very life and actions today might be shaped by the love God has lavished on us, his children.
Grace and peace.