The tendency to love conditionally seems to run through our bloodstream. I see this as I pastor, counsel, deal with children, conduct business, and manage my own emotions.
Let’s face it, we are conditional lovers by nature. Maybe this is why God described mankind in the following way in Romans 3:17:
“And the way of peace have they not known.”
Let me give a few reasons as to why unconditional love is the best option, especially in a marriage.
It Is How God Loves Us
The scriptures tell us that “it is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed.” (Lamentations 3:22) Simply put, God does not administer justice to His children, but mercy. However, I find it interesting how many seem to want mercy from God, but are unwilling to offer it to others. It is not only hypocritical, but also a sign that they have little experience with the grace of God in their own hearts.
We live in a society of blame, and I believe there is one main reason as to why this is the case: The further a society walks away from the reality of the cross, the more it feels the almost insatiable need to blame others. This is because all blame was absorbed at the cross, however, something strange seems to happen when a society moves away from the cross. That society starts to carry a sense of guilt and anguish in their souls that will work its way out through a variety of ways:
Have you not noticed the amount of advertisements for personal injury attorneys?
Some of our entertainment is starting to mirror that of the Roman gladiators.
The Need for Revenge
“For the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God.” – James 1:20
A General Anger in Our Hearts
We are an angry society. Just go out for a drive and miss a turn signal or drive five miles under the speed limit. You will quickly see what I mean.
Many of you know that in the last 8 weeks we lost our little Grace Evangeline. During the memorial, we actually dealt with this matter.
If you struggle with blaming others and accepting the will of God in your life, I would highly recommend you listen to Grace’s memorial. Many have already wrote and told me that though they did not know our little Grace, the content of the service has greatly affected their hearts and their ability to handle life’s very difficult situations.
It Encourages Better Behavior
Negative reactions to negative behavior rarely invoke better behavior. In fact, I deal with difficult people on a day to day basis. However, I have found that treating people as if they are already a changed person is almost always the best way to promote true change. I deal with this in chapter 9 of our marriage book, How to Fight for Your Marriage Without Fighting With One Another.
I actually call this the as if principle. That is, if you treat people as if they are exactly what you expect them to be, you will see more change than if you treat them according to what they presently are.
It is Commanded
To be honest, I am a little tired of always having to provide a why to people when encouraging them to obey God. It is just another sign of a society that has too many rights and lacks an understanding of the Kingship of Christ.
In my research. God never told Job why he went through all of his hardships. God only expected him to trust.
In like manner, we seem to always need 5 reasons as to why we should obey God or an explanation as to why something will work for our betterment.
God will not operate on our terms in such a way. He is the Great God whose very presence demands our obedience whether it works for our benefit or not.
Food for thought . . . Dr. Force