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Loving God Is a Love Story

September 13, 2017 by Scott Lisea

I have worked myself up in a sweat again; this time, while speaking at chapel to our Providence Lower School students. I don’t know why I chose to wear a jacket on this unseasonably warm day. It makes it hard to wildly gesticulate.

Afterward,  I stood by the door, giving high fives to students as they exit. The girls shyly gave me tentative high-five pats, while the boys attempted to shatter my metacarpals and phalanges.

Here he came: a very second-grade boy. He burned me a high five, then sincerely said, “I loved your love story.”

There it is. This is why I love kids.

“I loved your love story.”

I spoke to the students this morning about responding to God’s love for us. I told them about when I asked Jamie to marry me, about how I sang her a song that I wrote for her, got down on my knee, pulled out a ring, and asked her, “Will you marry me?”

It was a hanging question…just hanging out there…awaiting her response. She ended up answering in the affirmative, and I’ve got the three sons to prove it, but the point is that my question invited—in fact, it required—a response.

And so it is with God. He is not on a knee, but he did descend…quite a distance. Theologians wrestle to grasp the depth of the descent, but what is clear is that he came, and he came for love. And his love is so “out there,” just hanging out there requiring a response to make it a relationship.

Jamie is my wife, because she said, “I will.” God is my God, because I said, “I love you, too.”

Our verse for the year says:

“And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.” The second is this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these. (Mark 12:30-31)

I challenged the students to respond to God’s love, that indeed, God would be “their God.” Martin Luther thought the whole gospel could be summarized by the word “your” in this verse. This love for God is a relational response to his overwhelming love for us. This exhortation to us is a response to the love of God for us.

So when the little guy tells me, “I love your love story,” it catches me, and my eyes tear up, and all I can squeak out is, “Me, too.”

My love story is a response to a God who has loved me so generously. What else can I do but respond, “Me, too?”

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