“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in Him. In this way, Love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, Because in this world we are like Him. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out Fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.”
(1 John 4:16-18)
So If I’m reading this section of 1 John right, living in God has little to do with anything else but living in love. It doesn’t say anything about any qualifiers for living in God. What it doesn’t say is almost as interesting as what it does say:
It doesn’t say I have to attend church on a regular basis to live in God. (although I believe it helps FOR SURE)
It doesn’t say I have to be sober to live in God.
It doesn’t say I have to be wealthy to know God has blessed me.
It doesn’t say I have to be white to be in God. (or black, or yellow, or red…hmmmm…reminds me of a song I once sang as a child….but I digress)
It doesn’t say I have to be the greatest Father, Mother, Sister, or Brother.
It doesn’t say I have to memorize the Bible or go to Seminary.
It doesn’t say I have to listen to a podcast, watch a movie, engage in culture, etc.
It doesn’t say I have to fight evil around me.
It says, Whoever lives in Love lives in God.
Today, I’m moved to wonder…
Who is it I love?
More importantly – Who is it I don’t love?
If my goal is to live with God, How do I live in Love so I live in God?
The Blood Mooners
If I’m honest, today, I’m not really loving the Blood Mooner crowd.
I don’t know about you, but I’m so tired of people who use ancient texts to scare people into action. And let’s be honest, I’ve heard more about this Sunday’s blood moon this week than I have about Jesus. (a sad commentary on the state of the union of the church)
HELLO!!! It’s Y2K all over again. People calling for the signs and wonders of the Universe to tell the story of God’s movement on the earth. And I get it. You gotta sell books to make a living. If you’re a pastor, you must have some sensual story to compel people to think you’re smart or in tuned with what God wants. (because somehow we’ve lost the ability to trust the Jesus story as enough) And if Sunday comes and goes like many ‘sunday’ doomsday events of old, I’ll want to stand up and cry foul for all those people who went out and stocked their shelves with food, bought generators to keep the lights on, and scared people into thinking God’s Judgement was on the world.
And I’ll also be the first to stand in repentance on Sunday and say, “I didn’t love Blood Mooners last week.” There you go. As Honest as I can be.
But if God has called me to live in love, I have to love those who are caught up in this stuff too.
It doesn’t mean I have to agree.
It doesn’t mean I have to take it on as my life long fight.
I DO need to stop looking up versus about false prophets for retribution. (because I see all the pain this blood moon prediction can cause if it doesn’t come to fruition)
I DO need to stop justifying my own position.
And I DO need to confess.
I don’t love Blood Mooners today.
So, there I am. As naked and honest as I can be.
My prayer today
God help me love people like you’ve called me to. I long to live in God. And if it means I need to get over myself, lift this thing from my heart so I can love better.
If you’re like me, and you’re willing to be honest, who is it you don’t love this week. If you long to live in God, we have to wrestle with this one. Either we beat our spirit into submission, or we confess, repent, and allow God to do what only God can do.
Soften our hearts so we can live in love.