One constant thing in my daily routine is meditating on scripture when I wake up. I have an app, You Version, on my phone that makes it easy to access the Bible wherever I am. Each morning, I find a Verse of the Day and a couple of short teachings from different individuals on its homepage. It serves as a jumping-off point to ponder the things of God, our world, and how it can be a better place for everyone. It often turns into what I love to do—putting words on the page and sharing them with others. And that’s just what happened today.
Here is the verse that showed up this morning.
We love because he first loved us.1 John 4:19 NIV
We are born with the capacity to learn so many things. Depending on our environment and caregiver, love is one of those things. We learn to love. It is taught to us through example. How well we love will be an extension of how well somebody loved us.
I am lucky. My parents and grandparents and aunties and uncles were all great at showing what it looks like to love. I felt it. I knew what it looked like through their actions. It was not so much the words I heard. “I love you” was rarely spoken. It was how I was valued, and being valued gave me a sense of security.
In 1 John 4, the author tells us God is love. It is who he is and how he acts. We know what love looks like through his example. Others will know love as we practice what we have learned from him. I believe it will look very much like the love I felt as a child and the value I experienced.
Something to note about this passage, it states there is no fear in love. Fear brings with it the thought of punishment. That is not how God operates. His perfect love drives out fear and replaces it with security. What an impact this kind of love could have on the world.
My mind is always aware my three-year-old daughter, Jams, is watching me and how I do life. What does my way of loving teach her about how to love? I pray my love looks like God’s love. I want her to feel secure and know how to pass that same love on to others. With that as my prayer, I will continue to open the Bible each morning and ponder on God’s great love he has for us. I hope that much of it rubs off on me so I can carry it to my family and off into the world.
God is love. Whoever lives in God, and God in them.1 John 4:16b NIV