Love’s Continuum

God is Love.
God’s love is perfect love.

We live and love because God’s love is within us. But in us, it is not perfect. Our love exists on a continuum. At one end is the perfect love of God; at the other, hatred, the antithesis of love.

  • God’s Love
  • unselfish love
  • true affection
  • friendship
  • respect
  • kindness
  • disrespect
  • selfish love
  • using others
  • bigotry
  • hatred

Lent begins tomorrow with Ash Wednesday, a time when the church considers how we have fallen short of God’s call to us. So I have been thinking about our brokenness. This morning I read this:

God’s love was revealed among us in this way: God sent his only Son into the world so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the atoning sacrifice for our sins. (1 John 4:9-10)

I have begun the Lenten program put out by the Society of Saint John the Evangelist called “Meeting Jesus in John.” The beginning has consisted of some great passages from the Gospel and first letter of John. I highly recommend it.

We are broken and love one another imperfectly. Even with those we cherish the most, we are sometimes selfish and unkind. But God’s love does not depend on our perfection.

God loves us even in our brokenness. God loved us before we were even aware of God.

We have known and believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them. (1 John 4:16)

The more time we spend in God’s presence, in prayer, in meditation, in worship, the easier it is to love others. The closer we are to God, the easier it is for God’s love to flow through us. The closer to perfection we are on love’s continuum.

Lent is a time to focus on our failings, but it also a time to spend more time in God’s presence, to be more intentional about our life with God, not only what hinders it, but what enhances it.


Holy and loving God, you sent your Son Jesus to reveal your love to us, to proclaim your forgiveness, and to heal us: Make me abide ever more closely with you, that your love might give me life. Lord, I desire your grace to love more perfectly. I pray for your love to flow through me so your saving love may be known throughout this hurting world.

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