The Very Rev. Stephen Carlsen shares about responding to the healing love of God in this Day1 Reflection video.
Many people criticize Christians who proclaim that God is love.
Some think this is simply sentimental,
or that this is an easy message,
too easy to be believed.
Even some Christians think that it is too easy,
that we need a harder message and more challenging.
However, I believe that a harder message and less loving message is actually easier to believe, and less faithful.
What faith does it take to believe in judgment and suffering?
None at all.
These are simply fact about human life.
They are true and unavoidable.
And any honest faith must acknowledge them.
However real faith does not, cannot, stop there.
Real faith, true Christian faith, says that despite all of this,
the fundamental mystery, and therefore the fundamental truth beneath all is love,
and that this love is God.
This is not an easy cop out, but a bold proclamation.
So bold, even many Christians cannot fully believe it.
So many substitute a harder message that it easier to believe,
a message of judgment, of onerous duty, of works and not of grace.
Well, there is no dodging it.
This loving message is the Gospel message.
It is good news, so good that some shy away from it.
The only way we can believe this however is in action,
not only in words,
to see this message of improbable love taken to improbable places,
to those unloved and unloveable.
This would be impossible were it not for Jesus Christ,
who came to us and did just that,
took God's love to those least loved, to the darkest places,
even to the cross, death and the grave.
What in you is lacking in love,
what is unlovely and ugly.
Ask God to go there.
Take God's love to that place
and see it work, heal, restore, reconcile and save.
Think of Mother Theresa, or Martin Luther King, Jr. or Desmond Tutu.
God is love and that love is not for the faint of heart,
it fills our heart and strengthens it,
to love as we have been loved.