Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Everlasting Love

What is God going to do with us? He sees what a mess we have made of our lives and the world around us: "Your hurt is incurable and your wound is grievous...because your guilt is great, because your sins are flagrant." What is the divine response? "I will restore health to you, and your wounds I will heal" (Jeremiah 30:12-17). Why? What's behind all this, and why doesn't He just inflict a deserved destruction upon his people because of their sins (as He sometimes threatens)?

The reason is this, and I think it is one of the most beautiful passages in all of Scripture: "I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued My faithfulness to you" (Jer. 31:3).

Without this everlasting divine love we would all perish and perhaps by now would have already received the just punishment for our sins. But He waits for us, desiring our return. We ought to notice (for the sake of acquiring a bit of humility) that God maintains his faithfulness to us--not because we deserve it, not because we are good, not because of our righteousness, but rather in spite of our sins--solely because of his own love for us. God is love, as the New Testament would later explicitly reveal, and He can only relate to us out of his inexhaustible love. "I have loved you... therefore I continue my faithfulness."

This revelation of the unflagging, tenacious, irrepressible love of God should inspire in us a profound gratitude and should draw from our hearts as much of our own love as we can possibly return. How can we continue in our "flagrant sin" when the wounded Heart of Jesus remains patiently faithful to us in his everlasting love? Such defiant disregard of the humble yet all-powerful love of God will surely not endure the blinding light of soul-searching Truth in which we will all stand at the hour of our death.

Now is the time to reflect on the divine mercy, the boundless love of God that has endured countless millennia of human sin yet continues in faithfulness to us. Now is the time to return love for Love. It may be that in this valley of tears our love is still weak and imperfect. But if we remain faithful to the One who remains faithful to us, as soon as we cross the threshold of eternity we will begin to love Him with an everlasting love.