June 3rd, 2006

pain

crying over everything / goal as humans is to simply love / hurtful convo with pastor john

there's all this happy stuff I want to post about, but today has been such a painful day.

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THEN we went to church, and I got very upset with the sermon, so afterward I went up to talk to Pastor John. One of the main points of his sermon was that 'reaching the lost' was our highest calling as humans. I told him that I think that is 80% correct, that sharing our truth with others and helping them find God was a huge part of our main calling, but that our primary purpose is simpler -- just to love. I believe sharing truth is a huge part of love, but it is not all, and it is not the most important thing. I referred to Mark 12:30-31 "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these." The verb in these commandments, the commandments that replace old testament, is LOVE. And Jesus himself said that there was NO GREATER COMMANDMENT. That should be pretty clear! Love is primary, love is first, love encompasses anything and everything. The Bible also says, "God is Love" -- how then can there be ANYTHING greater than love??? to say so is to say that something is greater than God. 1 John 4:7-8 "Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love." 1 John 4:16 "And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him." LOVE is our calling, our purpose, our reason for life! PJ listened at first, nodding as I spoke of the importance of love, but when I said it was more important than 'reaching the lost' he didn't agree.

He started talking about being 'fruitful' and went on for a bit about how he had seen more people get saved since he gained his new way of looking at the goal of life, and I realized that we have a fundamental difference. I don't love people with the goal of leading them to Jesus, I love them for the sake of the God that made them and the amazing, phenomenal, unique, incredibly valuable spirit that they are. Whether or not they turn to Jesus is NOT MY RESPONSIBILITY. That is THEIR choice -- my responsibility is just to offer as much love as I can, and if they ask, to tell them what I know of how to reconnect with God.

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Ben and I had loooooooooong twisting painful conversation about all of it, but ended up with supporting each other and realizing that we are both on the cusp of major change. He's such an amazing husband, without him I just wouldn't be. And he's growing so much.