Loving FirstJuly 1, 2023 2023-07-01 8:03
1 John 3:11
11 For this is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another. (NIV)
Love is from the beginning.
When human beings do not love, they work against their ontology without realizing it. Like fish out of water, life resembles a flopping-in-the-boat existence. There is a great deal of movement and activity, but life is slipping away. Sin created a movement in our hearts from the ontology of love to a mechanism of selfishness. Without the help of the Holy Spirit, we first seek to be loved, then afterward, we love only those who love us.
As we grow in the love of God, He restores our ontology so that we begin to love first according to how He created us. The concern of whether we are loved by others pales as His love overflows and satiates the soul. His love creates a shift at our core restoring the ontology of loving first.
The world seeks to be loved first. Consider the age of selfies and social media. Many will use social media to love others and connect with them. But when there is a greater distance from God, posts and selfies are intended to garner love, attention, and acceptance. Selfies put on display the airbrushed life that is assumed will cause others to give this approval, acceptance, attention, and love. This phenomenon has always been, but social media has put a spotlight on it.
The sinful misalignment of our souls alters our logic. The misaligned but now natural assumption of humanity is that life peaks when we are loved. Many are loved, but when their main objective is to retain love, it comes with the pressure to always qualify for others’ love. The pressure does not bring about a full life. It is when the Lord restores our ontology of loving first as He loves first that life begins to peak. We live to love not to be loved. Because our main objective is not to solicit love, we live more freely without the pressure of others’ expectations. We do more to bless others, which gives us a greater sense of our worth as we see the value we add to the lives of others. We learn to embrace the proverb of Christ fully: It is more blessed to give than to receive.
Prayer: Lord, restore me to my created state before the iniquity of the fallen world. Help me to live in freedom from the pressure of expectations by loving first. Amen