How He really loves

She writes of the love of a man for a woman. Two lines ring all day in my head.

“One thing you can count on is the way I’ll love you.”

“. . . there are no standing lovers: the only way to love is to lay down.”

And I wonder if I’ve missed the point. I know it in the past. The One who loves me came down. Lay down. Rights. Glory. Everything. Lay down and died.

But do I know it still true in the present? Is this why I fear wholehearted surrender, because I’ve missed this truth? Because I think He’s done His part and relationship now is all about me laying down? Laying down life. Security. Control.

“One thing you can count on is the way I’ll love you.” He still lays down.

Yes, He has been raised. Exalted to the highest place. But He cannot change. The love that He is, the love that drew him once to lay down still does.

Look at Him, sitting in the place of honor. Watch what He is doing.

“Jesus. . . is sitting in the place of honor at God’s right hand, pleading for us.”  (Romans 8:34 New Living Translation)

Look at Him, alive forever. Watch His purpose.

“Therefore he is able, once and forever, to save those who come to God through him. He lives forever to intercede with God on their behalf.” (Hebrews 7:25 New Living Translation)

Forever He lays down independence, binding himself to us as He calls us to bind ourselves to Him. Committing for all time to live in us and for us and through us.

“Remain in me and I will remain in you. . . . Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit.” (John 15:4-5)

“And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way.” (Ephesians 1:22-23)

He lays down, too, the exclusiveness of His relationship with His Father, welcoming us into the inner circle of knowing and being known.

“I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. . . . I have told you everything the Father told me.” (John 15:9, 15)

“I have given them the glory you gave me, so that they may be one, as we are – I in them and you in me, all being perfected into one. Then the world will know that you sent me and will understand that you love them as much as you love me.” (John 17:22-23)

God is not a cosmic cop who stands over us and barks orders to lay it all down. He is a lover who daily lays himself down and calls us to lay ourselves down beside him so he may give all of Himself to us.

“In Him, in bodily form, lives divinity in all its fullness, and in him you too find your own fulfillment.” (Colossians 2:9-10 New Jerusalem Bible)

And I wonder, is this why He still wears the scars? To remind us that the fiercely protective, gently submissive, laying-down way He once loved is the way He still loves?

His life-giving love has not changed. See him, so gentle, so patient. Daily he continues to lay down his power, his rights, himself, to meet us where we are, to love us. See how he will not force or push past our fears and hesitations. He calls and waits until we’re able to surrender to love, to receive this Love that lays down. “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.” (John 15:13) “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8) We are safe in his love.

Hear it from Him:

“One thing you can count on is the way I’ll love you.”

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