Belief · Hope · Love

Generous Love: Disrupting a “Me” Centered Theology

Blog postPost-it Notes protrude from most of my books and notebooks {marking favorite quotes and things I want to return to again}. I place them for the sake of easy {future} retrieval–but–without a doubt, they eventually fall off. Have you noticed that? They transfer to the bottom of shoes, the elbows of sweaters, or to the dreaded “black-hole” {bottom of your purse, or bag}. Essentially, they are unintentionally given away.

Some of my notes have messages scribed on them–truth that my spirit needs reminding. Like this one:

Post it noteWhat if these notes, marking pages or recording the love of God, were only sticky for so long because I eventually need to share them with others? What good is marking something if I never return to it? If I just enjoy the line, quote, promise of scripture and then close it up in a book? No doubt they leave a mark on my heart, but then {probably} some are to be shared with others.

If that is true, I have to address the elephant in the room: sharing isn’t easy. Our culture encourages collecting and hoarding “things.” Knowing Jesus disrupts my “me” theology and risk enters my  safe, “me” centered world. Countercultural is difficult…like swimming upstream.

I don’t have to step out of my comfort zone {me centered thinking} long before I discover that loving {and sharing} is hard. This vulnerable, counterintuitive, and risky space is where I can share God’s transforming love. It’s scary. In my own strength and understanding, I am easily intimidated by the call to “love my neighbor as myself.” I have heard people say–you cannot give what you haven’t received. That’s convicting and probably what makes for the difficultly. To receive love I have to humble myself–with an open hand, open heart posture. Frankly, though I wish it weren’t true, on most days I prefer autopilot to the risk of humbling.

However, from a place of humility I remember that I love because God first loved me with a generous love. The story doesn’t shouldn’t end with me–as a recipient. If God loved me {and you} first, that love equips me {and you} to love others. This kind of love rattles my comfortable, “me” centered theology.

If God wrote his love for me on a sticky note {just stay with me} that I wore around on my frame,–over time there would be residual effects. His love would leave a mark on me and I might be inclined to share that with others. I want to take note of God’s great love for me, to drink it in with every ounce of my being, but I don’t want it to end in passivity. I need want to share that with others.

So I’ll start with this: if you don’t feel loved, if you’ve never encountered the love of God, or if you are unsure–take hold of this {make a little note}:

This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted; anyone who refuses to trust him has long since been under the death sentence without knowing it. And why? Because of that person’s failure to believe in the one-of-a-kind Son of God when introduced to him. John 3:16-18 {MSG}

Write that down.

Make a note.

Let God’s generous love leave a mark on you–and then–give it away.

5 thoughts on “Generous Love: Disrupting a “Me” Centered Theology

  1. Alyssa! This is beautiful. I’m gonna be driving through San Antonio around the 22nd or 23rd. Want to grab Christina and meet for coffee??? If so, I’ll share my contact details with you. I’m off Facebook for now. Had to walk away.

    Liked by 1 person

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