Love accepts us despite what we are, but we must dismiss the notion that love is satisfied there.
The modern conception is that love is a feeling. I have it; I don’t have it. Today I feel it – tomorrow I may not. Certain things stoke it – that’s what the card companies, chocolate makers, and jewelers promise.
But if love is genuine, and not merely a concoction of hormones in the blood stream, it changes you.
When you become a parent, the unconditional love of a child changes you. Suddenly you’re willing to sacrifice your time to sit up all night with a feverish child. You put your reputation on the line by publicly making faces and funny noises. Patience reveals its virtue when teaching shoe-tying and strange smells become simple chores. Sharing a straw in a cup of backwash isn’t gross. The child doesn’t set out to change the parent – making him a better person – it’s just the nature of love.
The Bible says that God is love (1 John 4:8). His love accepts us as we are, but it cannot leave us as we are. The outcome of His love is certain change. That love, poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us (Romans 5:5) is always, by nature, transformational.
What is God’s love transforming you and me into? Spiritual backwash slurpers? No. By God’s love we are beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, and being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, by the Spirit of the Lord (2 Corinthians 3:18). God’s love is at work changing us into the spiritual likeness and character of Jesus (Romans 8:29).