This letter was written by Mother Emma to the families with children at Grace in the Wednesday Growing at Grace email. The message, however, is one that we all need to hear on occasion. Please enjoy reading and always remember that you are loved.
Love, Love, Love
By far, the song that gets stuck in my head from Little Church or school chapel the most often is “Love, Love, Love.” It has a super catchy tune, and it summarizes some pretty fantastic theology. The lyrics to the first verse go like this:
Love, love, love
That’s what it’s all about.
‘Cause God loves us, we love each other
Mother, Father, Sister, Brother
Everybody sing and shout
‘Cause that’s what it’s all about.
It’s about love, love love.
Love, love love
Of course, I love the fact that the kiddos scream the word “SHOUT!” I also love that this song aligns so well with my understanding of God as the source and giver of all love. Our Presiding Bishop Michael Curry likes to preach, “If it’s not about love, then it’s not about God.” And frankly, I think he is onto something with that messaging. And I think the inverse is true: If it IS about love, then it is about God.
Each one of us encounters God every single day. God is unavoidably present in our lives. Whether we notice God’s presence is the question. When a dad scoops up a crying child and hugs them close, I see God. When a mom patiently listens for the 5 millionth time to the same joke, I see God. When a kid speaks the brutal truth, I see God. When a friend drops off a warm soy latte just because it’s been a long week, I see God. When a stranger is moved to tears with empathy, I see God. I see God in the many ways we love each other. And love IS what it’s all about.
Two of the other verses in the super-catchy song, “Love, Love, Love” say that love is all about me and then all about you. At first, I felt odd singing the line: “Me, me, me that’s what it’s all about!” I worried that it was too self-centered. But in actuality, in the eyes of God, it IS all about me. It also IS all about you. It is also all about each and every person. God’s love is not a finite resource. God’s love is unconditional, all-encompassing, and so vast that my tiny human brain can’t even comprehend it.
On the days when I struggle to get out of bed, when a shower feels like too much effort, when I cry in my car, when I am grouchy to people I love, when I fail, when I am ashamed, when I wish I could hit pause on everything…on those days, I need to hear that God’s love is about me. So if you are having one of those days, listen to me as I tell you: God loves you. No exceptions. Truly no exceptions. You are loved fully. Yes, even you who are thinking that I wouldn’t say that if I knew you better. God loves YOU too!
Hang in there, folks. The cold, dark winter doesn’t last forever. Your family at Grace is here for you, and we want to support you. We love you.
Yours in Christ,