"February is the home of Valentine's Day - but do we really understand love?"
This "love" the New Testament teaches us, is very hard to understand. Some say it is a mystery. Love your neighbor? How do we do that if your neighbor is a jerk? Love your enemy? Really? Loving others the way you love yourself? Have you seen "others" lately"? Good grief.
However, this is what happens when the "New Adam" (Jesus) replaces the "Old Adam" within us. We learn the true meaning of love - the cornerstone of the world. As much as we try to understand scriptural love, we can't. Love, as described by God, is an order of magnitude, times forever, beyond what we can understand.
It is by no accident that Bible does not instruct us to love each other the way God loves us. It would be impossible. God's love is Agape Love - true unconditional love with no boundaries what so ever. Human love, as defined by the "Old Adam", is conditional. It is in our nature. That is why the Bible tells us to love within our capabilities. To love each other the way in which we love ourselves.
For most of us, this love thing is as hard as it is mysterious. I struggle with it each and every day. God does not however. His love is the same today it was yesterday and will be tomorrow. No change. Unconditional and without boundaries.
To me, the biggest mystery of Agape Love is this forgiveness thing that is mixed in with the love. Our former pastor would always tell us there is nothing so good we can do which would cause God to love us more, and nothing so bad which would cause God to love us less. What this means to me is this - no matter how far you have strayed from God, no matter how heinous your behavior, Father Abba is always waiting for your return with outstretched arms. Wow! That type of love is as mind blowing as it is mysterious.
So this Valentine's Day, when you tell someone you love them, think about the word love as it pertains to the Bible. Love is a very powerful four lettered word. So powerful, it can change the world. So powerful, that 2,000 years ago, it did.