# 34 on my 99 Life Tips–A List is: The love of God is like light from the Sun. If you turn your back on the Sun, the light will hit you in the back.
I’m writing so you don’t let the Love of God hit you in the back. In the Bible, or Christian scriptures, there are many references to the love of God. Here is a listing of some of the more well know of them. Leaving aside very thorny, legitimate questions about the existence of evil and pain in the world for now, I will focus on one verse:
Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.~ 1 John 4:8, NKJV
This verse, pregnant with meaning, tells the reader all they need to know about the essential nature of God. God is love. Love is not an attribute, feature, or property God has or sometimes flexes. Love is God’s essence.
Does the Sun HAVE light and heat or IS it light and heat?
We could say, speaking about the star at the center of our solar system, the sun has light, or the sun has heat. But when we think about the sun, it is most accurate to think about what the sun IS than what it has or what it does. For us, the sun is light and heat, therefore energy and life. It is the energy source of all living things on the planet. Every calorie consumed (a measure of thermal units) is stored, portable energy from the sun.
Now we may imagine a person living in isolation, closed off in a room with heavy light blocking shades drawn, pulled closed against the intrusion of all sunlight. We may imagine duct tape at the edges to create an atmosphere devoid of even the leakage of light. But we know that all those efforts to avoid sunlight won’t make the sun itself stop shining. It will shine on the exterior of that building. It will shine on the back of those shades. Yes, those inside can ignore that and shut themselves off from it, but the sun will shine on undeterred.
The Love of God is the same
I see the God who is Love the same way. Since God is Love, there is nothing any of us can do to create love in God. And since God is Love, there is nothing any can do to shut it off, either. For God to stop loving would be to cease being God. The ode to Love and the God who is Love in the fourth chapter of 1 John in the New Testament is so compelling, one might almost invert the words to Love is God and still be just as true.
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God;
and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.~ 1 John 4:7, NKJV
Love needs a recipient
I decided a long time ago. If God is love, then the one thing an essential Love of that magnitude needs is a recipient, a “beloved” if you will. I decided God doesn’t have to look past me. I will absorb all the Love God wants to shine my way. For over 35 years, I have kept my face turned in the posture of recipient, the beloved. You can do the same. Turn towards that love. Don’t let the love of God hit you in the back. If you wake each day to the simple truth that God is Love, and you are still here, therefore you are loved, it will change your life.
I recognize that I’m not loved for my perfections, nor unloved for my sins. Nor am I loved for anything other than existence. I’m loved in spite of myself. I am loved because I’m here, and just like light from the sun, God’s love is shining upon me whether I face it or turn my back on it. Best to throw my arms and heart wide and give that God who is Love, what that Love is after… a home.
“And we have known and believed the love that God has for us.
God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.”~ 1 John 4:16, NKJV
Yes, perplexing questions remain. They are above my pay-grade. Most are beyond my capacity to understand at all. Doubtless you and I both have unanswered, bothersome, and painful questions, but they don’t negate the answers I have. And the single greatest answer is God is Love… not has, or shows, or gives Love, but IS Love. Don’t let the Love of God hit you in the back.