“What the world needs now is love sweet love” – what a great song and thought. And although it was first released in 1965, we could certainly sing it today with the same gusto and then some! But, it seems the more we talk about love and who’s more loving, our culture seems to get harsher and harsher and with…well…less love. We have people protesting about love who will get in your face and snarl at you if you don’t agree with them.
What is all this anger and angst about? I believe people want others to see their causes and themselves as good, that they are doing the right thing and because they feel that way others should agree.
It was those kind of misguided feelings I had that led me to prayer one day. And from that time in prayer, I wrote the song: “God Loves You.” The song starts: “I wanted to be a Super Christian the best that you could find. With just the perfect scripture and prayer at just the right time.”
In an encounter with an acquaintance, I had thought I was acting like a “good Christian,” yet my actions were misunderstood and I was shunned. This created feelings in me of injustice, anger, a lack of peace, and a desire to take it into my own hands and explain or if you will…protest (in my heart anyway!) I felt that my heart was in the right place and I wanted to do good! How dare she act like I wasn’t!
Not able to regain my peace, I decided to take it to the Lord. I spent a good part of one morning in deep prayer. I really didn’t even have words as I was praying. I just wanting my peace back and wanted God to show me what was going on. And He did.
He showed me in his most loving way that there is not one good person. Romans 3:10: “There is no one righteous, not even one.” Even when we are acting with best intentions. Even though I thought my cause was good and just, I was not good and just. Only Jesus Christ is good and just. And He also gently showed me that it really isn’t about me. It is about God and His love. And that freed me. That freed me to not have to defend myself. Not have to justify myself. It freed me to see the other person with the eyes of Jesus and live in peace. Knowing that Jesus Christ is a big God. He can take care of these misunderstandings and work them together for our good. Before that morning, I wasn’t completely trusting a loving God to take care of me or my concerns. And I do wonder if all the people these days who are protesting and angry at so much understand that there is a God who loves them too and wants to take care of their needs and concerns if they called out to Him.
In Christ there is no need for offense or pretense. So when you say to me: “You’re not good!” I can say: “You’re right!” The bible says that too! But Jesus…yes…but because of Jesus I know I am loved. I do have value. I can stand tall but in humility. And I can love fully and without pretense. I don’t have to act like I’m good, like I have all the right answers. Jesus has that covered. His truth and love, I believe, is the only thing that can heal this troubled world.
We could take our cares to Him and not have to argue cases as if our lives depended on it. We could see others as God sees us. As we would see our own children. We would have more patience, more understanding, more compassion. And we would want the very best for them. I believe that very best is to know Jesus Christ. To have the promise of eternal life and the benefit of living the most amazing life with Him while on this earth. A life that is full of rest and joy and peace. A life where He promises to take care of our every need. I have seen this promise come true in my life: Matt 6:33 “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.”
I recently watched a very sad show about hoarding where a woman had started out her adult life with abundance. A great career as an interior designer, a husband, a beautiful home. But, she developed this obsession where acquiring and keeping possessions and trash took over her life. And as this happened, her life got smaller and smaller. She lost her career, her husband, her home. That’s what the enemy does. He steals from us. His darkness creeps into our lives and he takes whatever he can. Jesus Christ adds, multipies, grows our lives. In Christ we may have trials, but we will always have a life that is full. Full of hope and wisdom and freedom. A life that allows us to love others simply without expecting anything in return. I pray this world will know the love of Jesus Christ. As the song says: God loves you and God loves me and that IS everything you see, He died for us so we can share eternity! John 3:16 “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” Praise God!