Love God Expecting Nothing in Return
When we learn to love God more than we love ourselves and we allow God’s love to flow to and through us and spill out to others in loving acts, that’s when we feel the most loved and lovable. It’s not a give-to-get, it’s a give-to-give love.
God doesn’t hold His love ransom from us and He doesn’t want us to hold our love for Him or others as ransom for anything. Love given freely, unselfishly, unconditionally, without expecting anything in return— that is pure love. When we love God with all our heart, all our souls and all our minds, that love of God consummates His love for us.
God’s love is like an ocean of water standing miles high around a glass heart that will come rushing in instantly only if we break the glass. He can't break it. We don't break the glass when we ask God to love us. We break the glass when we say, “If I gain nothing, if it cost me everything, if I suffer the rest of my life, for the love you gave me, Jesus, I love you!” When we do that, expecting absolutely nothing, that’s when the glass shatters and the ocean of God’s love and presence rushes in to fill us from the inside out.
1 John 4 says: “15 Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. 16 We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God and God abides in him. 17 By this, love is perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment; because as He is, so also are we in this world.”
We can learn from the thief on the cross at Calvary. He may be one of the most unlovable characters in the Bible. He must have been filled with fear that day in that hour, but he shattered the glass when he spoke out, recognizing Jesus for who He is: “Surely, He is the son of God!” The thief didn't speak out to get anything, but found everything in that instant he felt God’s love and loved God; and everything changed.
When we surrender our fears to the love of God and love Him—no matter what—everything changes for us, too; and that’s when we experience the greatest miracle of all.