Living in God's reality: unconditional love

Recently, GCI Pastor John Torgerson (who blogs at conducted a wedding for two non-churched people. His wedding sermon addressed two realities: the "unreality" of the world as we know it (in its fallen state), and the new "reality" of the world as God has recreated it to be in Christ (a true, though often unseen reality).

Pastor John's point was that it is in relationships (marriage in particular) that both unreality and reality are experienced. The "unreality" of our fallen world is expressed (and received) as conditional love: I love you if ... I respect you if... I forgive you if...  But God's reality is expressed and received as unconditional love. Pastor John urged the couple to embrace and express God's reality - his unconditional love. This is God's love for them, a love they may share with one another; and one day, with their children.

Pastor John then reminded them that the Gospel declares that Jesus Christ, the Son of God incarnate, entered fully our "unreality" and there took upon himself all its sin and suffering. Through who Jesus became, and through what he did, he brought access to God's reality for everyone.

He then reminded them of the Bible's definition of unconditional love (given by Paul in 1Cor. 13): "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres"

This is the unconditional love with which God, our loving Father, loves us. By receiving his love, we can then enjoy his reality, and share it, unconditionally, with others.