We were wired for relationships. Intended to revolve our lives around one another. To bear the burdens and be the “body of Christ” to one another. In living out this others-focused calling we refect the image of God as seen in the Trinity in what New York City’s Redeemer Presbyterian pastor Tim Keller calls the “divine dance.”
“The life of the Trinity is characterized not by self-centeredness but by mutually self-giving love. When we delight and serve someone else, we enter into a dynamic orbit around him or her, we center on the interests and desires of the other. That creates a dance… Each of the divine persons centers upon the others. None demands that the others revolve around him. Each voluntarily circles the other two, pouring love, delight, and adoration into them… ” (Keller in his book Reason for Marriage)
When we stop dancing we become static and self-absorbed. No longer circling around others but spiraling down the demanding path of “Love Me” instead of what author Bob Goff calls “Love Does.”
Love Does was one of my favorite books I read this summer. The premise of Love Does is the reality of Jesus’ love for us propelling us outside of ourselves and leading us to enter the “dance” of serving and loving others. As is written in 1 John 4:19-21:
“We love because he first loved us. If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.”
Wow – our love of God is seen, not by what we say we believe, but by how we love others. If this is true we must ask ourselves:
- Do our actions speak louder than words?
- Do we “dance” around others or do we stay a “wallflower” because we don’t know what to do or say to someone who is in pain?
- Do we circle around others’ needs or is our own circle confining us to not see who outside of it may be hurting and in need of a friend?
- Do we pass off the people in our direct path to the professionals (pastors & counselors) thinking they can better handle the problems?
What I hope we all see and Bob Goff shows through the stories in his book is that action is better than no action.
We may not know exactly what to say or do. We may have limited resources and time. We may be inconvienced or forced to make sacrifices. And we may get a little messy in dealing with the suffering or sin of others. But the point is: Do Something! Love Does!
Our action – or inaction – does speak louder than words. Love goes where others will not. Love dances when others have stopped. Love gives graces when others judge or ignore.
Ultimately, Love reached down from the cross. Love set us free of our sins and covered us in righteousness. Love so amazing that when we get it we don’t have to know just what to say or do, but we know the One to point to. The only One who can fill us completely. The One who did for us what we can’t do for ourselves because of His deep, deep love for you.
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