February has laid claim to being the “month of love.” Like it or not – hearts, cupids, roses, chocolate, valentines, and date nights seem to engulf the entire first two weeks of the month. Maybe it is more of a marketing ploy than anything or maybe there is more to the idea of love than a pink and red floral spray?
It could be argued that 1 Corinthians 13 is the “chapter of love” in the Bible. Most Christians claim this passage for weddings, couples’ studies, and the basic definition of love – real love.
Taking the love concept one step further leads us down quite a different path: Love lived out! The most cited verse in the stands of every sporting event is John 3:16, “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life” (ESV). Of course, the verse talks about love. But what about the preceding descriptor: “So?” In this context, Cambridge Dictionary defines “so” as an adverb describing the following word “love.” It literally means: extremely. God so very much extremely loves people!
Doing any sort of Biblical words study reveals that God’s kind of love is a lot different than what the world (or February) says. But John 3:16 also describes God’s higher-kind-of-love as also being extravagant. Take a moment and dwell on the thought of how much God loves you. It’s “so” much bigger than you think. His love brings hope, forgiveness and demands a response – you can’t just ignore it. You definitely can’t hide from the love of God. Go ahead and receive His love – it is a gift!
Here’s the cool part: Everyday, Corporate Chaplains of America chaplains are entering the workplace with Good News. What is the Good News? Quite simply, the love of God personified in Jesus who paid for our sins. Chaplains are vessels and ambassadors to share this extravagant love. They love because they have been loved. Not just loved, but “so” loved.
People often ask the chaplain, “why do you seem so joyful?” The only reasonable response can be that they have experienced the extreme love of God. They heard it, believed it, embraced it, and now share it.
As we surround ourselves with red and pink this month, step back and reflect on the amazing, extravagant, extreme, so-much-I-can’t-imagine kind of love that God is showing you. Then, go be like a chaplain and pass it on.