“Nate, for the love of God, please get ready!” I said when it was one of many frustrating mornings for me, back when my son was in grade school. Of course what I meant when I said “for the love of God,” was please stop stalling, stop arguing, and just do what you are supposed to do! I think that other parents of strong-willed children can identify with me here. He had this way of “pushing my buttons,” especially in the morning when our schedule was tight. He would do almost everything possible to avoid getting ready on these days that he chose to be feisty. So much so, that my normal morning cheeriness would be gone in no time flat after my son woke up. These kind of mornings would repeat often enough that I was frequently glad for my 45 minute drive into my job, just so I could get centered before my work day began.
But, when I think about the phrase “for the love of God,” I want to reject the meaning that I used when I was feeling and voicing frustration with my son in the morning. I want to give this phrase an entirely new meaning. Think about what the love of God has done for us. God created our universe and our world out of His very breath. God created us humans. Why? Well we really can’t know for sure just why God created our world and humankind, simply because his intellect is so much greater than the greatest human geniuses ever to walk this earth. As the ultimate supreme being, God certainly doesn’t need us to fulfill Himself. There isn’t anything that we could ever contribute that would make God any better than He, the ultimate being, already is.
But what we do know about God is that God Himself is love. And perhaps the ultimate way of God to show His love was to create humankind upon whom He could shower His love. That’s why I think that He made humankind, in His image, as the ultimate way to demonstrate His love. The disciple whom Jesus loved tells us that “We love because He first loved us.” (1 John 4:19, ESV).
God is pure and holy, and we are not. We are flawed and full of sin. As such, we cannot approach Him. And because God knows just how imperfect that we are, and because God loves us so, He gave us his only Son, Jesus to bring us into a right relationship with Him. It is through the love of God, and the willing sacrifice of Jesus on the cross, that we, the object of God’s affection are brought into a right relationship with our Holy and Pure God. That redemption is worth more than all of the riches of the world combined.
Therefore, we should strive to do all things for the love of God, not to obtain His favor, but simply because God loves us so. I should conduct my behavior in a manner worthy for the love of God, so that I can demonstrate, and reflect, the love of God to others. Maybe, just maybe, my words and actions will point others to the relationship that I enjoy with Jesus.
May I always do everything for the Love of God.
“God is love.” (1 John 4:8b, ESV)
“Worthy are you, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they existed and were created.” (Revelation 4:11, ESV)