The Nature of Love part two.. Conquered by Love.

8d8a84a2fb9899bbf6c70f223b7ea9b2Love conquered me, overcame me and dwelt within me over thirteen years ago. The person of Love and the fullness of Love, Jesus, through the beautiful Holy Spirit, came and firstly made his home in me and then, over time, more and more of his light began to shine into my darkness. His word began to breathe life to everything that he had created within me.

Indulge me. Let’s, for one moment, allow ourselves to be removed from the context of creation itself.  As we arrive at that place of timelessness, we find God, who pre-existed time (or at least our understanding of it). The Word (Jesus) already existed at the beginning John 1:1 (NIV). Nothing of his identity has been shaped, affected or altered by what he created. Not only does he transcend time, he created it. He is time, eternity.

God chose to reveal himself in the incarnate Son, Jesus. Bill Johnson often says that ‘Jesus is the perfect theology’. He has to be, as all things come from him. The difficulty comes, however, when we allow him to be trapped within our own human understanding. You see, the incarnate Jesus came to firstly die for our sin and in the process represent the true identity of the very Father that he was reconciling us to, through his death and subsequent resurrection.  Jesus said that if we have seen him, we have seen the Father.  We therefore cannot find anything in our understanding of the Father that we cannot also find in Jesus.

And yet God is also Spirit. Just as we begin to construct a humanistic understanding of God, he blows that away with his person of the Holy Spirit; mystical, blowing where he pleases, untamable, un-contextual and invisible. It is no wonder that the Holy Spirit has been historically the most neglected person of the Trinity.  Pride and fear can lead us to embrace only that which we truly understand.  And yet I’m not sure God ever called us to seek to understand him (whatever Anselm may have written), he is more interested in us encountering him personally in our hearts and allowing him to transform us into his likeness. He is clearly beyond our understanding. This is why seeking and hosting his manifest presence is so important, as it allows the mystery of God and his love to work in ways that we could never understand.

None of this is groundbreaking theology, and yet over the last few years, as I have been led on a journey of encountering God as love, his identity as love has seemed to grip me more and more powerfully. As love is the driving force, the currency and the purpose of The Kingdom of God, so maybe it is time to shift our gaze. If anything we do, say or even think comes from a place other than love, it is not from God, however we may wrap it up within our own excuses, convictions or causes. If anything that we do ‘for him’ ‘through him’ or in ‘his name’ does not expand the reign of his love on earth, it is not of The Kingdom of God.

As I will write later; true love flows. It cannot be contained, structured, institutionalised or owned. It has no boundaries, no walls, no fences. It cannot be branded or sold. That is because love belongs not to us, but to God, it is wild, ferocious, un-relenting, untamable. It is perfect. God’s love has a language all of his own.

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