Thursday, January 6, 2011

1/6/11 - How Does One Love God?

1 John 4:19 - 5:4
Beloved, we love God because
he first loved us.
If anyone says, “I love God,”
but hates his brother, he is a liar;
for whoever does not love a brother whom he has seen
cannot love God whom he has not seen.

This is the commandment we have from him:
Whoever loves God must also love his brother.
Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ is begotten by God,
and everyone who loves the Father
loves also the one begotten by him.
In this way we know that we love the children of God
when we love God and obey his commandments.
For the love of God is this,
that we keep his commandments.
And his commandments are not burdensome,
for whoever is begotten by God conquers the world.
And the victory that conquers the world is our faith.
Do you ever wonder what it means to "love God"?  The answer is in this passage.  "For the love of God is this, that we keep his commandments."

It is easy to be attracted to the idea of God, to like what He says, to take comfort in Him, and to understand that I'm supposed to love others.  However, to actually return that love to God, I need to obey his commandments. 

Is that easy to do, or hard?  For me, far to often, it's hard.  But according to St. John, it shouldn't be:  "his commandments aren't burdensome."  Why the discrepancy?  

Tuesday's daily actually helped me solidify that answer in my mind.  The answer came directly from the Catechism.  Love is a THEOLOGICAL virtue -- one that originates with God.  That mean it doesn't originate with me.  God, according to His will, "dispenses" that virtue to me.  This gift from God is called "grace."

So ... I struggle to love the way God intends BECAUSE I DON'T GO TO HIM FOR HELP.  God's love is divine in origin.  It can't come from me.  It has to come from Him.

Man, I wish I'd gotten that through my skull earlier in life.