(Jesus said) “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” John 13:34-35
In a recent (re-run) episode of the Big Bang Theory, Leonard gets in trouble with Penny because he says “I Love You.” Did you wonder why? I sure did.
There is a research paper Pennsylvania State University had published in the Journal of Social Psychology. It seems the university had interviewed a bunch of young men and the thing they found was, well, they found out that it was the men, yes, the men, and not the women, who were first in saying those three little words: “I love you.”
It’s true. Men were three times more likely to initiate that verbal expression of emotional commitment. The researchers were surprised. I’m surprised. Even the men who took the survey were surprised.
Of course, there is an ongoing discussion as to what those findings mean.
There are some who think this proves the modern young man has become the perceptive, sensitive, caring individual his mother spent years trying to shape — the kind of young man eligible ladies have been praying they would someday meet.
And there are the cynics and skeptics who believe “a young man will say anything if it will advance his case and take him to where he wants to go.”
As for me, I find myself disagreeing with the university’s study. That’s because I am absolutely sure it’s not the man, nor is it the woman, who is first to say, “I love you.” I say this without fear of contradiction or exception, the first person to say “I love you” is God. Long before the foundations of the earth were made, He loved us. When our first ancestors sinned by wanting their own way, He loved us with a sad love, but He still loved us.
It was that love which had Him promise He would send His Son to save us. It was God’s love that watched as Jesus breathed His last and claimed victory on Calvary’s crest. It was that love which sends the Holy Spirit into this world and, by means of Word and Sacrament, calls people to oneness with God.
Now I don’t fault Pennsylvania State University for not expanding their search to include God. It can sometimes be difficult for an institution of higher learning to make an appointment with the Creator and Redeemer.
Even so, I thought it was something that needed to be said. We have been blessed to have a God who is always first, always faithful in saying, “I love you.”
Dear Lord, thank you for loving us even when we are so unfaithful to you. So many times we think we are in control and that you love us because we are so lovable, when in reality we are not the least bit lovable… and yet you love us in spite of ourselves. In and through Jesus. Amen.
You will notice at the bottom of the header (above) are a list of my books. I have added the last one so you can order The Grieving Heart in paperback form. All the other books are eBooks. I hope that you will take the opportunity to read these and I hope they will help to bring you comfort and grace in time of need.