One of my dearest friends and sister gave me a book recently. Joyce Meyer's Reduce Me to Love. And well, what can I say...I haven't gotten very far. This is by no means a reflection on her writing. I love Joyce. It's rather because I just couldn't get past the scripture she starts out with:
I give you a new commandment: that you should love one another. Just as I have loved you, so you too should love one another. By this shall all [men] know that you are My disciples, if you love one another [if you keep on showing love among yourselves]. -John 13:34-35 (AMP)
Wow! This is such a rich message! What is Jesus' desire for me, how should I walk out this life, which he has set before me? How (much) does he love me? How do I become more like him? How do I show people around me how much he loves them and how much I love them?
With those questions I went about my day. Today's been one of those wonderful days where I had a smile on my face from the moment I woke up (and I intend to go to bed with it) just enjoying the time he's granted me here. Somewhere over the past months the time I would spend on myself had changed. Don't get me wrong, we all need alone time. But time for myself looks different now than it did maybe a year ago. It is now time I get to spend alone WITH him. Moments of intimacy, fellowship, jokes, direction, correction...whatever I need most, but it's always about love and motivated by it. What we share stays between the two of us- unless he entrusts me with something for somebody else...
God is love. God gives love. Love gives.
Sometimes I get so wrapped up in God's love that I truly don't desire or need anything else. I'm talking about a time when I don’t just know in the bottom of my heart, by the experiences and memories in my mind but by the way I feel with every fiber of my being that God lives in me. We are one. He is love and so am I. Love sustains. Love is substance. God is.
His presence is intoxicating, makes me want to take Him all in. His love is addicting, the one substance we were created to crave, to do everything for to get it if we don’t have it and tell everybody about. Think of a drunk person for a moment or somebody who is “on something”. You can always tell, can’t you?
Same thing with being drunk on God’s love: People can tell. They might not always know what’s going on with you, but trust that they’re picking up on it. Jesus said they'll know you by it. If you’re so drunk from taking in His love you’re walking around beaming, smiling at everyone even those with a sour face- because you don’t care that they’re probably not going to smile back. You reach out to people you've been meaning to call and look for ways to identify and meet the needs of people that cross your path on the street...Your love is just spilling over and the aroma of God’s love surrounds you.
You see, such love was never meant to be held back to just ourselves. God is our source, we are His vessels. Don’t be afraid or allow drunkenness to make you forget to share this tantalizing love with others. I think keeping it to myself would eventually smother it down to the size of a pilot light. But sharing it with others opens myself up to receive even more as I continue to give. It's a win-win situation.
When nobody else is around I can still do that. I give it back to God. I praise Him and tell Him about the joy I feel because of Him, the gratitude for being alive and called for such a time as this; for righteousness and abundance of every good thing in Christ, for deliverance and freedom. If anything, a beautiful sunny day in snowy Chicago will trigger some gratitude, trust me. Bathed in sunlight, while I’m driving through the suburbs I tell the love of my life how much He means to me, over and over and over. Then I stop and ask “How can I love you back? It’s not like I can hug you or kiss your face…” How do you love someone, really lavish them with love if you don’t see them with your physical eye?
I see parts of Him, His essence and sometimes His miracle power. What an amazing thing. Glory to God! As much as I long to see eye to eye with the love of my life, my natural eye does not perceive Him.
"So what can I do? I know I can honor you with my tithe, I can tell you, respond to you in the way I shape my life…but how do I demonstrate...how do I LOVE you?"
And just when I’m about to freak out over this...a Word. He goes, “Feed my sheep.”
Praise God for the ability to hear His voice! I smile and am back to telling Him about my love for Him, how awesome it is that one word of Him settles every storm, no matter how big or small. As we continue to fellowship I think about ways to feed His sheep...
Jesus loves you and so do I.
 John 21:16