“We love because he first loved us” (1 John 4:19).

George MacDonald describes love as what is most precious in the Godhead. He writes that love is “a higher thing than the making of worlds and the things in them.” He says this in exploring the many implications of the first chapter of John: “He existed in the beginning with God. God created everything through Him…The word gave life to everything that was created, and his life brought light to everyone.” For MacDonald, the deepest essence of God is the dynamic love between the Father and the Son. Scripture says, “God is love” (1 John 4:8). The mystery of how we could be drawn into this love goes far beyond our grasp. Yet the way Jesus stayed in constant prayer to his Father gives us a clue. The astounding promise that we can become children of the heavenly Father means we can pray as Jesus prayed and invite His Spirit of love and truth to become dynamic in us. If we are to be like Jesus, we will naturally love the Father. Obeying his Father cost Jesus the Cross. To obey our loving heavenly Father may cost us many things, starting with our self-will and our natural bent to run our own lives without interference. Praying like a child means obeying like a child, with both love and respect. Jesus loved the Father with his whole being. As his redeemed children, we are now from “the same birth home” as Jesus. His Father is our Father. What a wonderful reality!

Adapted from “The One Year Book of Encouragement”