Love: Freedom’s “so-what”

Beloved, let us love one another, because love is from God; everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. – 1 John 4:7-8

me, Rebekah, Alicia, and Andrew in Wake Forest

Yesterday I posted some – IMHO – important ideas about freedom (Let’s Not Waste the Gift). Today I’m thinking about freedom’s so-what.

The so-what of freedom is love. I don’t believe there is any other force with the capacity and the power to effect change – often against all odds – or to motivate the level of self-sacrifice that is always present when evil is confronted head on.

I specifically thought about this, yesterday, in the context of family. Rebekah and I don’t have a huge family by any means, but the children are as far-flung as it is possible to be. So the opportunity to be together doesn’t present itself much; and when it does it becomes a little easier to remember how critically important it is that we love one-another eloquently when we can.

So I’m sharing a couple of photos of Andrew and Alicia from earlier in the week (they’re in Michigan now), a few from yesterday in Richmond, and then the only one we remembered to take when “the core four” were together in Georgia.

the “core four”

It’s the photo of David and Beks from yesterday, when we took our beautiful grandchildren to the mall to let off steam, that brings this entire conversation together. Love is the ultimate motivating and empowering fact that makes freedom not only possible, but worth the cost.

Jesus did not give everything so we might experience political freedom, but so we would be able to enter into the ultimate love relationship(with God) without fear. The opposite of love is not hate, it is fear. Love, then, enables us to live in absolutely any circumstance without fear. When we have the freedom to love without fear, then we have a solid foundation from which to pursue other freedoms. Outside of love, though, everything else is hollow, and without substance, and simply doesn’t ring true.

Outside of love, everything else is hollow, and without substance, and simply doesn’t ring true.

I love God; I love my family; I love this country. Some things don’t always hold together in the way we’d like; but – because of Jesus – there is nothing, absolutely nothing in all of creation, that has the ability to separate any one of us from God’s love.

neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 8:38-39

In love, and because of love – DEREK


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