I was talking to my nine-year-old granddaughter a few days ago about school. I asked the name of her teacher, what her favorite subject is, who her boyfriend is- - you know, the standard questions. It is amazing to me how quickly she is growing and changing. Where does the time go?
After our conversation I happened to think back to a frightening incident that happened when she was only two years old. She had contracted pneumonia topped off by an ear infection. Late in the day her fever spiked which caused her to have a seizure. This was the first time that had ever happened to her and as you might imagine created no small stir in the rest of us.
An ambulance was called to transport her to the hospital and my wife and I took her two older brothers to our house. Like most brothers and sisters, they know how to aggravate and irritate each other and enjoy doing it. However, in situations like this, it is remarkable how they pull together and demonstrate a deep, genuine love for one another.
Both boys, who were ages seven and five at the time, were praying for their sister and were a little scared from what they had witnessed. Perhaps the words of the five-year-old summed it up best: “When I saw Jovie like that, it made my heart hurt.”
Love is like that! It is a wonderful, almost indescribable feeling. Yet when you have a strong, intense love for someone you will also hurt in your heart for them. Of course, we get that feeling honestly. It comes from our Creator.
Yes, God has that kind of intense love for us. When He looked down upon us and saw us in the clutches of sin He was stirred to action. To illustrate, I will use the familiar Bible verse that many have committed to memory, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). It is noteworthy that the Mexican Indian translation of John 3:16 is: “For God so hurt in His heart that He gave His only Son….”
To think that the God of heaven has that kind of intense love for us is a most awesome and humbling thought! It should also stir our hearts to respond by loving Him back (cf. 1 John 4:19). But how do we do that? John gives us the answer: “For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments…” (1 John 5:3).