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The Exchange Rate of Love


What does delighting oneself in someone look like? That’s the question rolling around in my head tonight. I was reading Psalm 37:4, one of those verses found on calendars, coffee mugs, and Thomas Kinkade paintings:

“Delight yourself in the LORD, and He will give you the desires of your heart.”
(ESV)

Well, you better believe my heart has desires. There are things I really, really, really want, and if there’s surefire way to get them, I’m interested. So what exactly does “delight yourself in the LORD” look like? I have ideas, but nothing too concrete just yet.

When I was first considering it, I thought about human relationships. I thought about those couples that are totally enamored with each other, and what it takes to get to that level of love. It’s time together. It’s trust and openness. It’s forgiveness and understanding. It’s love and respect. It’s discovering just who that other person is. With humans, it’s entirely possible to start to get to know someone, just find out that they actually aren’t as amazing as you imagined; we’ve all experienced that. But God isn’t imperfect. At all. He’s the most amazing, intriguing, fascinating, awe-inspiring, loving, understanding, smart, compassionate, witty, humorous, caring, and otherwise good, being there is. There is simply none like Him. If you spend time with Him, He’ll spend time with you. If you trust Him, He’ll be open with you. If you forgive, He’ll forgive. He wants relationship with us.

Now, you may have read somewhere, or thought it yourself, “Why doesn’t God just make me love Him? He’s all powerful, He could do it.” I think that while God is indeed powerful, He put in us a power over our love, generally called free will. We have no material thing to give God; He’s not moved by that. He’s moved by the giving of our love to Him. That may include giving up some material possessions, but it’s different for each of us.

Sometimes, I think that my love isn’t very much. Why would God want the love of a5275currency_exchange broken young man that has done (and still does) so much wrong. But I’m reminded of the widow that Jesus and the Disciples saw giving her all in the temple. Her all was about 2 cents, but it was her all, and Jesus said that it was honored more than the ten percent given by the wealthier. God’s exchange rate is is way more unbalanced then of that between the Euro and the Iranian Rial (about 1 to 16,000, by the way). Our little offering of love is met with a flood of love from Him in various ways. Sometimes He simply speaks of his love to our hearts. Sometimes it’s physical things. Extra measures of spiritual gifts are entirely possible. He will give what you need to feel loved, and He knows you better than you do, so it might not be what you were thinking you need.

He has such love for us, and all we need is to give Him our love. If only it weren’t so terrifying.

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