Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends,~John 15:13.
A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another,~John 13:34-35.
If you assessed my life story or fully understood my personality, I’d be one of the most unlikely to be used by God to love His kids. I’m highly introverted. As a kid my mum said I spent most of my time under the dining room table with my notes, tools, and sketch pad. I can spend days to weeks with just God. I get lost in thoughts, theories, and creating. I’m also, according to Myers Briggs, INTJ (introverted, intuition, thinking, judging). We are not known as the sentimental types. We are primarily thinkers, not feelers. We ask, “Does this work?” We get lost in logic. We solve problems, hence my pursuit of a career in engineering and science.
I tell you this because God is able to love through anyone who’s willing. I prayed long ago for God to teach me to love like Him. I had no clue what it would cost. I had no clue how deep, vast, profound, rich, generous, compassionate, and sacrificial God’s love truly was. I am still learning.
One person other than Jesus I could pinpoint as an example of supernatural love is Apostle Paul. He was, before His encounter with Jesus, a persecutor of Christians. After His encounter with Jesus, Paul became one of the most radical lovers of God, the Gospel, and wrote Corinthians 13 the chapter on love.
The love of God is supernatural, it’s beyond human ability. Humans naturally want to put themselves first. Agape love is sacrificial, selfless, pure, unconditional, holy, honoring, and out of this world. It’s the love Jesus has for us and tells us to have for others.
How do we get this love, God’s love in us? It starts with relationship, intimacy with God. We must first receive before we can ever give. We also abide in Him (John 15:5). The more I’m with God, the more I love people. This love is still challenged. Trust me! Yet with the passing moments of oneness…His heart invades mine. He has imprinted His great love on my heart.
Supernatural Love Stories:
I’ve pondered how to share stories while honoring others, so there’s a summarizing and exclusion of names. I’m in the process of writing three more books, they will include more life stories as there’s space for them. Here are a few brief stories that may fuel your faith.
I have a person that caused great pain in my life. More pain than anyone else. They treated me poorly in so many ways. When I went through my health crisis, they were not supportive or compassionate. They would say things like, “You’re not really sick. If you were stronger, you’d get up from there…” Well, I was sick. My hair fell out in places, I was on beta blockers for my heart, seeing specialists,…I was a mini train wreck. Yet God has healed me. Praise pause 🙌. Thank YOU Jesus! 👏.
This person later begin to face their own life challenges, health problems, and God gave me the opportunity to love. Love wasn’t met with appreciation. It was met with excessive complaining, ingratitude, sometimes anger or hostility, and there were many days I’d sit with God thinking, “Why am I being punished? Why am I in this situation? I’m too young for this! Why do I have to love? This person doesn’t even appreciate love.”
I’d love to tell you prayer led to warm, fuzzy, and loving feelings. I didn’t. There were days where I’d just sob and call out to God for help. Days I wished I could join the witness protection program and run away from my life. Crisis after crisis wore me down emotionally, mentally, physically, etc…I was really young and overwhelmed. While other kids were enjoying their lives, I was trying to juggle chaos. Yet God is stronger. He didn’t deliver me from. He delivered me through. That person grew to slowly change. I didn’t change them, God did something. It was the most painful and challenging season of my life. Yet God’s love is a sustaining power.
Fast forward and my first real opportunity to do discipleship ministry. Like Jesus there were 12 women and me. I gave my life, heart, time, energy, home, and all for those I was leading/discipling. I gave my all for 3 years. I helped people move, opened my home, cooked meals, hosted parties, wiped tears, prayed, played/sang at weddings, was a friend…I’m a 100% type of person. If I commit to someone or something, I’m giving it my all. The people I gave my life to, well several of them turned on me, gossiped about me, lied on me, one even cursed me out in public, one created so much drama people from out of the state were emailing me at work about it, and well…God never gave me permission to walk in unforgiveness or try to avenge myself. I sat in silence while being cussed out (He supernaturally closed my mouth. My natural bend would’ve been to rebuke that woman). It was so painful. It was challenging. There are absolutely no words to express the level of grief it caused. If I had sinned, I’d accept it as my consequences. Yet my issues came from teaching the Gospel as it’s written, pointing to Jesus, being who God created me to be, and not promoting people to leadership roles because God had not released me to do so. Some of those relationships were never fully repaired, yet a few were. There’s forgiveness for everyone, yet not everyone repented or even acknowledged their sin. And God gave me the opportunity again to forgive and love. Supernatural love when I only felt numb inside. Supernatural love to try again with ministry, though I didn’t want to love again sacrificially after those experiences. Christians became my frenemies so it took God to get me back into ministering to other believers. Some may say, that’s no big deal, grow up. Yet until you’ve laid down your life for people who betray you, there’s no place to reference from. Only Jesus knows fully what it’s like and even He experienced great grief facing the cross.
I found through those years of heart wrenching how much love cost Jesus. I was not nailed to a rugged cross, but my heart was. And “I’m sorry,” never healed nor took away any of the pain. Only God can and does.
I sometimes think we (humans) think our sin, rebellion, or rejection of God doesn’t affect Him. It does. And though we say sorry and repent, our behavior does impact His heart. God has feelings…He loves more than we can comprehend. I can’t imagine since He loves more than me how deep it cuts His heart to see His children destroy themselves and others.
If I loved others by experiences with loving people, I would only love a few people or not love at all. This area of my life has been hit with the most opposition and pain. Yet God doesn’t call us to love a few people. He calls us to love everyone, even our enemies.
Challenging love situations, they teach you so much about God. I don’t love perfectly, God does. Even though He loves perfectly, He’s rejected, used, verbally abused, neglected, hated, ignored, forgotten about, sought after only in crisis, sinned against, and much more.
I used to think going through challenging experiences with love was some form of punishment. Yet God was answering my prayer, “Teach me to love like You.” God teaches by giving us opportunities.
As of the past few years we have moved from love boot camp, to God supernaturally downloading His heart for people into mine. It makes it a bit easier, yet doesn’t change the response of others to me. I still meet rejection, people who attempt to attach themselves to me for their benefit, misunderstandings (why is she being so nice to me?), and I have a few that are oh so challenging to love. I rely fully on God for love, another lesson learned from these experiences. People can’t fill your love tank.
God’s love for you is beyond describable, yet I will try…
God thinks of you continually. He cares about EVERY single detail of your life. He wants you to maintain your freedom to choose (He’s no control freak or manipulator), He’s not absent minded (He keeps log of all your desires and dreams), He celebrates you, He knows all your flaws and still longs to be with you, He sets up opportunities to bless you, Jesus lives to intercede for you, He moves mountains for you, He corrects to restore you, He enjoys every moment you spend with Him, and He desires so much to be with you!!! This love, His love, is life changing. If you want to see your life changed or change the world, receive this love…God’s unfailing & radical love!
You see one of the greatest miracles of all is the Creator of the Universe loving humanity.
God bless you! Next time we will talk about divine intelligence, when God gives you His wisdom and intelligence. Praying for you! You are SO deeply loved.