Let’s fill ourselves with God’s love PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 20 June 2015 10:37

REFLECTION

BY FR. ROY CIMAGALA

If we really want to be in love, let’s fill ourselves first of all with the source of love who is none other than God. “Deus caritas est,” God is love, as St. John says, indicating the ultimate essence of God. And since we are his image and likeness, we cannot be other than men and women full of love, of God’s love.

We have to be wary of distorting this fundamental truth about ourselves by simply generating our own kind of love that will always be limited, highly conditioned, effective only under what weconsider to be favorable conditions.

We have to make the effort to feel the love of God for us which he pours on us abundantly. That’s simply because unless we feel that love and get moved by it, we cannot manage to love as we ought to love. Let’s always remember that Christ himself commanded us to love one another as he himself has loved us. Christ makes himself the standard and source of our love.

Otherwise, what may happen is that we may just rely on our own self-generated kind of love that can only do so much. For example, our self-generated love would not know how to be patient for long with trials and sufferings, how to love and be merciful with those who give us trouble.

It would be a love ruled by the law of Talion, eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth. It would be a love marked by self-interest. In other words, it would not be pure and completely gratuitous. There would be strings attached to it. Also, it cannot last long. It would be too dependent on our moods, and other shifting conditionings.

We cannot give to others what we do not have. We cannot reap what we have not sown, and what we sow is first of all sown in us by God himself, who is our Creator, Father and everything to us. He is the one who gives us the full scope of the love proper to us. Not only that, he gives us the power to live it abidingly.

We readily see this law of love working even in our normal family life. A baby, for example, knows nothing about loving when he is born. But he is immediately showered with love and affection, and learns to reciprocate in his own ways, which we often describe as “cute.”

What is given to the baby is given back to us, and what he observes and receives as he grows is also what he shows and shares with others. That’s why it is very important that the young ones are always given good example of loving, caring, serving others, etc. Otherwise, they can become self-centered and selfish.

Everyday, we should work out this need of filling ourselves with God’s love, since this does not come to us automatically. In the first place, we have to contend with our human and natural limitations that simply cannot cope with the fullness of God’s love.

This is not to mention that we are also burdened by the effects of our sins and weaknesses, the environment of temptations and other conditionings that would make us not only insensitive and resistant but also hostile to God’s love.

That’s why it’s good to cultivate a life of recollection and contemplation even while in the middle of the world, ever meditating and relishing on God’s goodness, wisdom, love and mercy.

That he created us when there was no need for him to do so, that he endowed us with the best of things such that we become his image and likeness, that he always forgives us when we fall and is patient with us in our erratic ways, that he provides us with all our needs—all these and more should always be in our mind and heart.

Even if he allows trials, suffering and calamities to come our way, we should not forget that his love knows what to do with them. As St. Paul would put it, “Love bears all things, hopes all things, endures all things…” (1 Cor 13,7)

How important therefore that our thinking and even our sensibility is infused with piety, a piety that is supported by a theological mind, so that we would always be aware of God never-failing love for us. And not only that, but also that we would be moved to love God and others in return.

We should do everything to fill ourselves with God’s love. On God’s part, he is never sparing in giving us that love to us. It’s up to us to have it as much as we can!