Friday, 5 March 2010
How He Loves
[the clip in the background is from the film "The Passion of The Christ" please do not watch if you are faint hearted, please watch if you need to be stirred again about just how much we are loved by God]
Love is one of those words that are banded around fairly liberally. From the throw away "oh I love [add random name]" about someone you barely know but maybe makes you laugh or does something amusing, to people's passionate 'love' for their football team (I'm speaking about myself here too), it seems our society has managed to devalue what is one the greatest things we can do as human beings...
But we are reminded that we have a God that loves us, unconditionally, jealously, passionately, eternally and the list can go on and on. In Romans Paul shows us that the Father loved us so much that He gave his only son Jesus, so that nothing could separate us from Him, not even death itself.
What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written:
"For your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered." No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
A song that has been stuck in my head for some time is the song by John Mark McMillan called "How He Loves". I prefer David Crowder's version (though that's of little real significance). The story of how the song was written is below.
"He [John Mark] had a youth minister he was close to and he’d been praying and praying for there to be a movement among the youth that he was leading. One morning, when they were meeting to pray he said, “I’d give my life for this if that’s what it takes to see a movement among these youth. Do whatever you need to do God.” That evening John Mark’s friend, Steven the youth pastor, died in a car wreck, and John Mark wrote the song in memory of his friend."
I love the song because it does not conform to standard lyrics or imagery but yet the simple chorus that seems pierce my heart right to it's core. It reminds me of the scene in Good Will Hunting when Matt Damon's character is repeatedly told that it was not his fault he was abused.
It's what we need to hear again and again, He loves us, Jesus loves us and that will never change.
The lyrics of the song are below and I hope your heart melts in your chest just as mine did and all those things of the earth seem to become so insignificant when you think, meditate, about just How much He loves you, me, us all...
How He loves by John Mark McMillan
He is jealous for me,
Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree,
Bending beneath the weight of his wind and mercy.
When all of a sudden,
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory,
And I realise just how beautiful You are,
And how great Your affections are for me.
And oh, how He loves us so,
Oh how He loves us,
How He loves us all
Yeah, He loves us,
Oh! how He loves us,
Oh! how He loves us,
Oh! how He loves.
We are His portion and He is our prize,
Drawn to redemption by the grace in His eyes,
If grace is an ocean, we’re all sinking.
And Heaven meets earth like an unforseen kiss,
And my heart turns violently inside of my chest,
I don’t have time to maintain these regrets,
When I think about, the way