January 8, 2019 3:00 pm

‘What Has Been Given’
In this is love: not that we have loved God, but that he loved us…

– 1 John 4:10

The above few words never fail to astonish me. I conceive of growth in the spiritual life as more about seeking ways to love God, as if I bear within myself the means to make that love happen. I read John’s words and wonder if I have long put the cart before the horse. To deepen one’s awareness of God’s love for us is to gradually understand that whatever love we are able to give and receive comes from God. Loving God does not make us good. God’s love for us makes us good. In my quiet moments, I do wrestle with my lack of love, my shortcomings and how far I have yet to go to arrive at an acceptable state of loving. I should be quiet, stop taking inventory and let God speak through all the love he has poured into my life, into this world. It is a way of seeing what has been given as opposed to looking for it.

– Fr. James Stephen Behrens, O.C.S.O.
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