Saturday 23 January 2016

How can I love God?

I believe that the experience of living with and in the gospel and letter of John for almost three years now, has prepared me for the encounter with the blind evil in Istanbul last week. 

A couple of days ago I wrote: “Because I love, I feel that I live. I love God…” …and that is the core of my heart’s desire, but how can I do this in a practical and concrete way when “The love” is not me loving God. John stresses that fact in the following verse:

This is love: not that we loved God,
1 John 4:10a
John confirms what love is with this conclusion: “Love is … that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”

Love is to love that which God loves, which is “all men” – and to make sure that they know that that there is an available atonement for sins. I believe that all people who do something evil or even just fail doing good, at the bottom of their hearts know that it is wrong. 

In my teens I read a sentence that has stayed with me: “Dad spanked Ole and said: ‘I’ll teach you to bully those who are smaller than you!’ – and that was just what Ole learned!” - simple, almost banal, but it still contains a lot of truth. 

If I meet evil with evil, I confirm that evil is OK. If I on the other hand meet the evildoer with God’s love, I give a signal about the fact that there is an atoning hope. That is why faith, hope and love will remain. Most people are actually receptive for this message. They long to be embraced by goodness because they need hope, they need something to believe in, they need God who is love.

Today’s ‘manna’:
To love God is to love what he loves!
This is an English translation of my Hvordan kan jeg elske Gud?

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