Part of a poem written by Mark Twain states:
“Love like you’ve never been hurt.”
Rest on that phrase for a moment. That simple statement is so profound.
Why do we make love so hard? We place conditions on it, try to wrap it up in a pretty package to disguise the fact that it is really based on how much the other person loves us first. Or worse, how much they can prove that they won’t hurt us as much as the last person did.
Sometimes, if we’ve been hurt, we carry that hurt like a shield and even if someone really, truly, loves us-we don’t want to believe it’s real. We might not even recognize it. So we reject it.
What if we just allow ourselves to love even though we know that sometimes we will be rejected, taken for granted, taken advantage of, and despised?
Isn’t that what Jesus did?
If we learned to love like He did, we could heal the sick, the lame would walk, and we could raise people from the dead. No agenda. Just the act of loving people back to wholeness. One embrace, one tender touch of pure unconditional love would be enough!
And if you think you can’t do this alone, you’re right! Release the hurts of the past and let the Lord soothe you. Let His justice give you peace. Let Christ take that shield you have held against your heart so you can love again.
It’s not something that can be taught in a classroom. But it is something we can all learn. Christ-like loving takes practice and lots of it. The secret is we love from His strength and not our own. We love from His abundance and not our own. We love knowing that if we were incapable of loving; our hearts would not have been broken in the first place.
John 13:34-35 (NIV)
34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”