God Loves us with ALL His heart, soul, mind and strength..He loves us as Himself..Wow!

We are receiving some lovely snowfall today and so I thought I might include a beautiful snow scene with today's ponderings (we ended up with 6 lovely inches of snow, almost a 'blizzard' here in the balmy southern US!):

Sun Through Winter Tree Branches - Free High Resolution Photo

A Quote from Richard Rohr:

The God Jesus incarnates and embodies is not a distant God that must be placated. Jesus' God is not sitting on some throne demanding worship and throwing down thunderbolts like Zeus. Jesus never said, "Worship me"; he said, "Follow me." He asks us to imitate him in his own journey of full incarnation. To do so, he gives us the two great commandments: 1) Love God with your whole heart, soul, mind, and strength and 2) Love your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:28-31, Luke 10:25-28). In the parable of the Good Samaritan, Jesus shows us that our "neighbor" even includes our "enemy" (Luke 10:29-37)."

My thoughts:

I just noticed or felt something as I read this..God invites us to love with unconditional, perfect love..THAT is exactly how HE loves..how HE loves US!  God loves us with His whole heart, His whole soul, with all of His mind, and with all of His strength..with all that He is..He loves us as Himself..He loves those who call themselves His enemies, He blesses them/us, and does good to those who hate Him and spitefully use Him (misunderstanding His true nature).  

Wow!   He loves the hurting and wounded people, loves the littlest and the least, loves the ones others have forgotten, even loves the one we try most to forget and deny - our own needy, helpless, hurting and hurtful selves!  He loves the part of us that is wounded and little and lashing out in fear and bitterness, the one who has forgotten how to love, forgotten what it ever felt like to be loved..that is the one He loves, the one we think is our 'true inner selfish self'...when in reality it is only the hurting and confused and tormented mind, not our real true spirit self at all..that real and true spirit self is part of God, one with God, and therefore always perfectly lovable and loving!  

We love with an infinite, unconditional love because that is Who we came from and are part of, that is how we were always loved and always will be loved, that is the swaddling blanket we are eternally wrapped in, that is the core of our existence, that is the hub of our universe and the center upon which all of time and eternity is grounded..that LOVE is WHO WE ARE, Who we came from, and Where we are going to be forever! 

God loves us with all He is..HE loves the part of ourselves that we may call 'enemy,' the part we are ashamed of and may despise or try to hide..He loves all of us, every part of us, in sunshine and shadow, waking or sleeping, rising or falling, living or dying..HE loves us and holds us and that is the ground of our whole lives.   

The center.  

The truth that makes everything okay somehow.  

We are loved like a prodigal who is thrown a party instead of being punished, loved like a happy child swung round and round by a wonderful, doting Dad, loved like a little toddler who is safe in His Papa's arms, loved like a baby nestled against its mother's warm bosom, loved like someone who has just arrived safely home after a long journey and finds everything just as it was remembered..the longing is over, the search is ended, we were home all along, safe all along, in His arms all along.  Was there ever any other place we could actually be?  No, never.  HE is everywhere we go.  HE went with us into every dark alley.  HE was always there inside us.  HE carried us all along.  HE is the Home we were looking for all along, and all along we were at Home in Him..SAFE.  BELOVED.  HOME!

I love this Loving Papa who never lets go, who loves with such an unconditional and gracious love!
May the amazing grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the extravagant love of God, and the intimate friendship of the Holy Spirit be with all of you. 2 Co. 13:14