This is a guest post by my good friend Ben Stroup. Ben is a writer and consultant. His latest project with former American Idol finalist Danny Gokey will be released by NavPress in October 2013. Ben and his wife, Brooke, have two boys, Carter and Caden, and live just outside Nashville, Tennessee.
Unconditional Love Can Change the World
Unconditional love is not necessarily the first topic that comes up for ministry leaders. There are much more important things to do. Events to plan. Bible studies to lead. Sermons to preach. Staff to lead. Yet for a topic many are quick to comment on from the platform, we rarely give much thought to its significance in the ultimate juggling act we call ministry leadership.
Love without condition may be the most impossible thing we can imagine. It doesn’t make sense. It doesn’t add up. And some might even question whether or not it even exists.
But we must believe that it does.
If it doesn’t exist, then we must also question our own motives and intentions. If nothing can be done out of self-less care for another human being, then everything is done for our own gain.
That means our life commitment to ministry leadership is nothing more than a hat tip to the people we claim to serve and an all-consuming act of self-directed worship of ourselves and our talents, skills, and abilities.
I choose to believe that love without condition exists because I can’t live in a world without it.
Unconditional love is one of the most powerful forces of change given to God’s people to carry out through God’s church. It is the fuel that will bring about not only revival but also total transformation.
Unconditional love heals the broken, empowers the timid, affirms the hesitant, and elevates those who have been overlooked, forgotten, and silenced. There is a power that comes to those who show and to those who receive unconditional love. Those who show this love are released from being consumed with themselves. Those who receive this love are released from limitations others have placed on them.
The challenge for those who lead God’s church is to find ways for Christ-followers to show and receive the kind of love that exists without condition. This is hard to do in a world full of broken promises and shattered dreams.
But this is the gift we have been given and the role we have been called to play.
Too often we excuse ourselves from opportunities to embody unconditional love because we are convinced we aren’t smart enough, mature enough, experienced enough, or rich enough to make a significant impact. That simply isn’t true. You have everything you need right now to show unconditional love toward someone else
Unconditional Love is not a challenge for the future but now. It is not something we can wait to do but is something we must initiate right now. You can be an agent of change.
Choosing to recklessly share unconditional love with others in the same way God has done for us will change you and the people you reach.
How can you help the people in your church discover love without condition?