God's Measure of Love

Wednesday, February 26, 2014 Posted by Lezlie Winberry

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"Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” (Luke 6:27 & 28)
            
 “Are you crazy?’ The father, whose son lay in I.C.U. with a gunshot to his 15-year-old body, shouted over the phone. “You want me to love my enemy?” As if that were even possible, he thought before shoving his phone back into his jacket pocket.
            Thirty minutes later, this same man, pastor of a local church, wet the sheets of his only child’s bed with tears in hope of understanding. 
             “Jay,” he heard the Father’s voice well up within his heart. “Who does your son love—the most?”
            “Why, You, Lord. Ever since he was a toddler.”
            “When, and I’m not saying now, but when, he passes from this life to the next, where will he be?”
            “With You, Papa, with You.”  Pastor Jay slid to the floor next to his son’s bed.
            “Why do you preach?” Papa asked.
            “What do you mean, God? You know why. To spread the good news.”
            Who do you preach to?”
            “The lost.” His own answer pierced his heart.
            The loud wail that came next from room 201 brought the night nurse to the door. She paused when she saw the pastor in a fetal position. She glanced past him to the monitors of his son and noticed his vitals signs were normal for the first time since he was admitted. She crept away from the intimate scene in silent prayer.
            When the teen’s father rose from the floor, he knew what he must do next. His hands shook as he dialed the number. He steadied himself in the worn leather chair and waited for an answer.
            “Mrs. Wells,” Pastor Jay began. “Can I talk to your son?” 
            Detecting her hesitation, he quickly added, “I want to tell him how much his heavenly father loves him. And,” Jay swallowed hard, “that I forgive him.”
            “And,” now his voice almost squeaked, “I love him and want to visit him when ...” 
            Before he could finish, he heard her crying. “Oh, thank you. Thank you. You don’t know what this means.”
            Even though the connection went dead, the peace of 1John 4:19, “We love because He first loved us,” filled both their rooms.  
            (Certainly not a funny measurement, but a divinely one of God’s perfect love for each and everyone of us.)

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