This is the last of The Love We Crave Series, based on "The Four Loves" by C.S. Lewis.
For the past 4 weeks I have been shoving the word intimacy down our throats, often obnoxiously and unapologetically.
If you would like to read the other articles in this series, look at the right hand side column on your browser. For most of us Smart Phone train users:
The Love We Crave Series:
If you've only just joined us - welcome! Let me reiterate that you were created for a community of intimate relationships. May your love tank held up by the pillars of storge (familial), phileo (friendship), eros (lovers) and this week - agape (God).
I know we don't all believe in God. However those of you reading this will understand that I write from a Christian Church Gal perspective, and so if you decide to continue reading, I would be most honoured for your time and curiosity.
AGAPE LOVE: Your GOD
I want to marry two paradoxes together:
- Agape love is the selfless, sacrificial, unconditional love; the highest of the four types of love in The Bible. This love is from God, and is God's nature. It is like the endless burning of a furnace, or an untameable ocean, not requiring reciprocity from outside sources for it to keep loving or fuelling.
- Jesus was fully human, yet fully God, modelling the "perfect" human with limitations and boundaries.
QUESTIONS TO BE ASKED & ANSWERED
- So if God's love is purely gift-love, why did Jesus need to set boundaries?
- What is the line between having good boundaries and being generous with your time, money, skills and resources?
- Why should we prioritise God's love, and use Him as our model for how to love perfectly in giving and receiving intimacy?
BOUNDARIES BABY, BOUNDARIES.
Pouring reassurance into my re-used Mount Franklin bottle, Pastor and Psychologist Bill Gaultiere asserts that Jesus certainly did set boundaries for Himself. He studied the life of Jesus in the four gospels, proactively looking out for the times when Jesus said no to his disciples, to his family, even to people who desperately needed healing. Read the article here (it’s mind-blowing).
Before diving into Jesus’ relaxed, cheerfully-giving and serving needy-people-life, I’ve slapped a white sticker label on the concept of boundaries. I call it, “The Square Fence Theory”.
Personal boundaries are what define your identity. Liken them to property lines around a home. This is my property, and all that other stuff is not my property:
Jesus had self-awareness about his calling: To sacrifice Himself for the sins of the world. His lifework of people-healing, devil-outcasting, crowd-preaching, and dead-resurrecting led up to this point. Christians call this His "ministry".
This singular focus on world-atonement was Jesus's agape factor. Regardless of His emotional state He was determined to go to the cross. Not only was it the cruellest form of execution by the Roman government, this physical torture and execution represented supernatural warfare.
Picture a chess board of white angels on one side and black demons on the other. When Jesus the perfect human sacrificed Himself = Heaven's white angels charged forth in offensive attack. All past, present, future sins of the world were forgiven by God the Father as He required the pure blood of Jesus's perfect humanity. (I know, sounds gross but stay with me). Death is now defeated = Hell's black demons screeching, clutching their bloodied knee-caps as their only plan to keep humanity under control was through grave head-locks.
The church hymnals might make more sense now.
Jesus knew who He was: The Son of God, the atoning sacrifice. Identity precedes action.
He couldn't confidently perform miracles if He didn't know that He was the Son of a super powerful Alpha/Omega God. Contrarily, He couldn't patiently keep His mouth shut while Herod mocked Him if He didn't know that getting nailed to a cross with acceptance and trust is what sons of God do.
I believe Jesus had the choice to not accomplish the mission. He even chatted to God about it intensely in the Garden of Gethsemane when He asked the Father to "take this cup from Me". However He chose the mission over His own fear to be sacrificed.
He resolved to put the world before Himself.
His attitude, actions, decisions flowed on canoes to the river of the moment He would go to the cross. He knew He couldn't heal everyone, go everywhere, and be everything to everyone. He accepted His human limitations, but pursued His God-assigned mission.
AND NOW BACK TO THE QUESTIONS...
If God's love is purely gift-love, why did Jesus need to set boundaries?
- Because incarnated, Jesus had human limitations, just like you and I do!
What is the line between having good boundaries and being generous with your time, money, skills and resources?
- Knowing what's inside your square fence (ie. your calling) and sticking to it (ie. saying no to what is outside of it) as that is all we can accomplish as humans.
Why should we prioritise God's love, and use Him as our model for how to love perfectly in giving and receiving intimacy?
Decide this for yourself. Personally, the marketing campaigns of other religions, world views and psychological theories have not been as soul-penetrating nor heart-convincing for me. So I'm sticking with Jesus.
LET'S ERADICATE LONELINESS.
SO LIKE AND SHARE THIS ARTICLE TO EQUIP ANOTHER PERSON TO PRIORITISE PEOPLE, SO THEY BUILD A THRIVING NETWORK OF LOVE AND SUPPORT.
CLICK ON THE LOVE HEART BUTTON AND SUBSCRIBING VIA RSS FEED OR TO THE NEWSLETTER.
READ MORE OF THE WEEKLY COMFORT BLOG:
- May 31, 2017 How To Not Be Intimidated By Really Attractive People May 31, 2017
- Apr 21, 2017 How To Let Him Pursue You Apr 21, 2017
- Jan 18, 2017 A Note on Work Ethic Jan 18, 2017
- Nov 1, 2016 9 Thoughts on Christian App & Online Dating Nov 1, 2016
- Oct 25, 2016 A Note to The Creatives Oct 25, 2016
- Jul 31, 2016 A Note on Money Jul 31, 2016
- Jun 30, 2016 Like Does He Have A Car? Why Financial Stability Is So Important To Women Jun 30, 2016
- Jun 8, 2016 Part 5. Navigating Christian Dating Culture: The 10 Blindspots of Faith-Filled Single Gents Jun 8, 2016
- Jun 1, 2016 Part 4. Navigating Christian Dating Culture: The 10 Blindspots of Faith-Filled Single Ladies Jun 1, 2016
- May 26, 2016 Part 3. Navigating Christian Dating Culture: In Defence of the Friend Zone May 26, 2016
- May 19, 2016 Part 2. Navigating Christian Dating Culture: Some Practical Applications May 19, 2016
- May 10, 2016 Part 1. Introduction to Navigating The Christian Dating Culture May 10, 2016
- May 4, 2016 The Self-Respecting Person's Guide to Networking May 4, 2016
- April 2016
- Mar 30, 2016 The Love We Crave Series: Parents Mar 30, 2016
- Mar 24, 2016 A Note on Intimacy Mar 24, 2016
- Mar 17, 2016 So Cool Was SoCal: Mexican Food, Margaritas and Money Matters Mar 17, 2016
- Mar 6, 2016 So Far in SoCal: Observations from an Asian Australian Tourist Mar 6, 2016
- Feb 24, 2016 5 Truths to Help You Annihilate Self-Doubt Feb 24, 2016
- Feb 19, 2016 4 Reasons Why I'd Like To Stop Swearing Feb 19, 2016
- Feb 10, 2016 The 7 Benefits of Being Asian Feb 10, 2016
- Feb 1, 2016 4 Things You Need To Know About Your Personality Type Feb 1, 2016
- Jan 19, 2016 Part 3 – Figuring Out Who We Want To Be In A Relationship With Jan 19, 2016
- Jan 12, 2016 Part 2 - Figuring Out Why We Want To Be In A Relationship Jan 12, 2016
- Jan 11, 2016 Part 1 - Figuring Out What We Want In A Relationship Jan 11, 2016
- Jan 4, 2016 7 Strategies for Controlling Negative Emotions Jan 4, 2016
- Dec 31, 2015 The 1 New Year's Resolution That Will Actually Work Dec 31, 2015
- Dec 29, 2015 10 Questions to Test Your Self-Awareness & Self-Respect Dec 29, 2015
- Dec 21, 2015 5 Tips On Handling Rejection Well Dec 21, 2015
- Dec 12, 2015 7 Tips to Help You Kill It On Stage Dec 12, 2015
- Dec 7, 2015 Poetry: 5 Life Lessons That Took Me Forever to Understand Dec 7, 2015
- Dec 1, 2015 Short Story: Power Dec 1, 2015
- November 2015