|March 18, 2007
Background Scripture: 1 John 4:7-21
Devotional Reading: John 21:15-19
When I was young, parents were urged to tell us “the facts of life.” Today, lots of young people wonder whether they shouldn’t be telling their parents “the facts of life.” I think it is time we teach both parents and children something far more important: The Facts of Love.
The problem is there are so many misconceptions of what love truly is. La Rochefoucauld wrote, “There is only one kind of love, but there are a thousand imitations.” Unfortunately, the “thousand limitations” are what capture the imaginations of so many people.
I do not pretend to know all the Facts of Love, but here are some of the most important.
First, true love connects us to God. As 1 John tells us, “Beloved, let us love one another; for love is of God, and he who loves is born of God and knows God … for God is love” (4:7,8). God has shown us precisely what love is: “In this the love of God was made manifest among us; that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him” (4:9).
Without God, we cannot fathom the dimensions of love. Without love we cannot be in fellowship with God. “No man has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us …” (4:11,12). Love is more than a characteristic of God; it is His character.
Second, love begins with God, not us. When love has to survive the potholes of life, when we think we have to generate enough love within us to meet the challenge, we need to remember that the reservoir of love lies in God, not ourselves. “In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved