The Power of Unconditional Love
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” John 13:34
It doesn’t matter who we are or what we’ve done, God’s love is unconditional, unchanging, unfailing and limitless. We can’t do anything to earn God’s love. There is nothing we can do to make Him love us more or less. He accepts us as we are. God loves us not because of what we are or have done, but because of who He is and what He has done. God is love (I John 4:8).
God’s love for us is so great that while we were still sinners, He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, as the propitiation for our sins (Romans 3:24-25, Romans 5:8). Jesus died for us. Propitiation is the appeasement of God’s righteous wrath for our sins. Jesus satisfied God’s demand for the payment of sin. The moment we accept Jesus Christ as Savior, we are declared not guilty. We, as believers, are saved from God’s wrath and reconciled to Him because He first loved us (I John 4:9-10).
Unconditional love has the power to heal all wounds, bind people together and build a foundation for healthy relationships. Unconditional love is about acceptance. It is not about expecting others to make you happy through their choices and how they live. We can’t control others. Unconditional love is loving another as they are, no matter what they do or fail to do.
Unconditional love removes expectations and limitations on people and puts our expectations upon the working of the Holy Spirit for everyone’s best. The work of the Holy Spirit transforms and changes our will and desires to give and receive love. By the empowering design of the New Covenant, we follow the urge to express love. To the degree we continue to live with a mixture of human love and unconditional love is the degree of struggle and strain we have in life. We can know about unconditional love, but if our emotions are still held in fear, emotions will take over. The expression of faith that works by unconditional love gives us the answers to life and makes us a channel for God’s riches to flow to others.
God’s love is a love that initiates. It is never a response or it would be conditional. If God’s love were conditional, we would have to ‘get’ something from someone or something. When there is no one else in our lives to rely on for love, God’s love is always with us. We often expect others to provide the kind of love we believe will make us feel ‘happy’ rather than embracing God’s unconditional love.
People will disappoint us, but God never will. Instead of depending on others to complete our need for love, rely on His unconditional love. God always follows through and He always provides what we need.
Foundation for Expressing Unconditional Love
Be interested in people. Love, value and give respect for their sake, not Jesus’ sake. Interest, love, value and respect for others is greater than the need to complain or correct them. Allow unconditional love to replace the idea that we know what’s best for others. If we expect people to do what we think is best, we are sowing in the flesh. Unconditional love sows in the Spirit.
Forgive people. Forgiveness opens the door to love (Matthew 6:14-15).
Be a good listener. Respect, appreciate and validate what others are saying (Galatians 6:2).
Be fair to others (Galatians 3:28). Many times we unfairly judge others based on their behavior or their opinion. We don’t show them the respect they deserve. The urge to judge or criticize others will turn to discernment with the revelation and practice of unconditional love. If you think it is your business, pray for them. If it is not your business, leave it alone.
Be an encourager. Say words of affirmation. Be quick to give compliments and offer encouraging words. Refrain from giving unwanted advice. When we value and affirm people, we are releasing a powerful force of God’s highest and best into their lives (Proverbs 12:14).
Give the gift of time and service. Spending time with a person is love expressed. Love in action is the art of service which focuses on what a person really needs. As you give, you receive (Luke 6:28).
Give acceptance to others and focus on their strengths. Acceptance allows freedom for others to be themselves. Always bless and not curse (Romans 12:14).