Happy Mothers’ Day
At the heart of our faith lies the deep truth that we are unconditionally loved by God. We believe that God looks down on our lives and says: You are my beloved child, in you I take delight! We do not doubt that truth of that, we just find it impossible to believe.
This weekend we also celebrate the love of our Mothers, a love we believe was and is always full, accepting and always present. And yet we often will say to ourselves about God’s love of us; “I know God loves me unconditionally. I know that’s true, but how can I make myself believe it? I simply can’t!”
My only question to that statement is, “Why? Why is that so difficult to believe?”
Most often we all will experience love with conditions, even from those closest to us. Mostly, we tend to believe that in this world, we have to measure up in some way to be loved. Moreover, many of us too have been wounded by supposed expressions of love that were not love at all but were instead expressions of self-serving manipulation, exploitation, or even positive abuse.
Beyond even this, all of us have been cursed and shamed in our enthusiasm by the countless times someone, either through words or through a hateful or judgmental glace caused us to be unable to believe that we are loved and lovable. So, even when we KNOW God loves us, how can we make ourselves believe it?
Well, I offer you this scriptural metaphor that God gave to Joshua on how to move into the Promised land of Canaan, to “kill” everything there. Meaning you must leave all the old of life behind and enter something new clean, free from any “Canaanites” hanging around.
This image is telling us what we must do to enter our true self-image, the deep truth that we are unconditionally loved by God. We must cast aside all of our old images of self, of being so sinful that we are unforgivable. They are the inner voices from our past that can, at any given moment, ruin our self-image by dragging in our past sins and humiliations by saying: “Who do you think you are? Do you really think that you really that honorable? Do you really think that you’re loveable? We know you, we know your past, so don’t delude yourself!”
Don’t listen to the naysayers, even when that naysayer is you. To actually believe that we are unconditionally loved, we first have to kill a few “Canaanites.”
This week we reflect on the Spirit of Truth and the Spirit of Unconditional love as our Mothers modeled it for us.
The world tries to tell us what love is and means. But, the “Spirit of truth” poured into our hearts by the Father leads us to discern where unconditional love lives and where true satisfaction lies: in Jesus himself and being faithful to love as he has loved us.