The Look Of Love

January 7, 2016
by Nan St. Louis

When I began in ministry many years ago, I quickly realized that I didn't have enough love for all the people in my congregations. I cried out to God for His love. It was then that I experienced an overwhelming flood of loving care for the people that I encountered every day — a love that accepted them as they were, that reached out to their needs, that drew them closer to God, that saw them as they were and also what they could be in Christ. This for me was a turning point in my life.

In 1967, Dusty Springfield had a hit song called The look of love, about the way two people look at each other when they are in love. I was thinking about a different one: the "look of love" that was in Jesus' eyes. Mark 10:21 says that Jesus looked at the rich young ruler "and loved him". In Matthew 9:36 and Mark 6:34, Jesus looked at the crowd following Him and "had compassion on them" … a look of love. In John 15:9, Jesus says, "As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you." (NIV)

Jesus stood out in a crowd. There was something different, something special about Him, something compelling, attracting people to Him. When He looked at them, He looked with eyes that saw everything. It was a gaze that could have been judgemental, critical, negative, condemning, if it were not for the love that came straight from the Father's heart. We often think of God as judge. He is. But He is love. Jesus' harshest words were for so-called religious people who focused so much on law that they judged and condemned everyone but themselves. Our souls are naked under God's gaze. He sees it all — and He loves us.

Now, do we have the look of love that Jesus commanded? "Love as I have loved." "Love one another." "Love your neighbour as yourself." How we need God's love in our hearts to love the people that we see every day: the stranger, the neighbour, the friend, the unlovable. We need eyes to see as He did, to see and to love. Do you have the look of God's love in your eyes?

This is often my prayer: "Lord, let me see through Your eyes, and love with Your love." We can know that prayer is answered:

1 John 5:14-15 – This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us — whatever we ask — we know that we have what we asked of him. (NIV)

God never commands what He does not provide. His will is for us to love others, so when we ask for Him to pour out His love into our hearts, we can believe that He has done it, and then act accordingly.

Our prayer: Lord, forgive me for the pride, the condemnation, the indifference in my heart for everyday people. Pour Your love into my heart to cleanse me and to fill me with that overflowing love. Open my eyes so that I may see as You see. Amen.

About the author:

Nan St. Louis <nanstlouis1@sympatico.ca>

Durham, Ontario, Canada


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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Well done, please write again.


    Thanks for the words Nan. Blessings.


    Thanks, Nan. I needed that today. Blessings.


    Such a wonderful post Nan. Thanks for sharing this much needed message.


    Thank you!
    For sharing this inspirational message.


    HAPPY NEW YEAR Nan! It IS HARD to LOVE ALL!
    I need to ask God to help me love those that I don’t love so much.


    I have learned that look of love as expressed as a caregiver — a job I was paid for for 7 years as I worked for a local home support company.


    Nan, It’s so very good to hear from you through this devotional. Thank you for your exhortation to love as we have been loved by our Lord Jesus Christ. Blessings.


    Dear Nan,
    Thank you for your words for us today — something to read every morning to begin our day in the Lord.
    Many blessings to you.


    Dear Nan,
    This is an amazing and powerful meditation. It puts together the bits and pieces of the gospel message found throughout the New Testament. I am increasingly aware of the constant theme, often embedded in complicated
    theology as in Paul’s letters, that the only really essential message is “Love one another as I have loved you.” Of course, as you illustrate so well, this message comes to us as the authentic message of our Creator as brought to us through Jesus. It has been interesting to me, recently, to realize the message of love to mankind actually started with Creation.
    All through the Old Testament God’s magnificent care for his creation is shown by the concept of love through respect and thoughtfulness to every person, and also to all creation. For example, I’ve been thinking a lot recently about the amazing and comforting principles behind the Ten Commandments. The concept of gender equality stands out. Not only that, but slaves and even animals are all included in the principle of respect for each one and each one’s needs. At other places in the bible, the concept of loving care for the land and vegetation is very clear. Thanks for clarifying and reinforcing for me this concept of love.


    What a beautiful message portraying how the Love Of Christ manifested in your life taught you to accept and love your congregation as a pastor should love his flock.
    My husband has been a pastor for over 50 years, and all through his ministry I marveled at the way he loved and cared for those whom the Lord had placed in his path to minister to.
    He journeyed all the way from teaching little children in a down-town Sunday School to an exciting ministry to the many throughout Canada, where he always loved and nurtured those who needed someone to care for them and listen to them in their time of loss, hurt, need and disappointment, never judging them and always loving them in any situation.
    You were so blessed to have found the Love in Christ that makes any ministry a success. Folks don’t remember how great your messages were, are. But they do remember your wrapping your arms around them and crying with them when their hearts are broken.
    A wonderful message leading us to the foot of the cross and asking for the Love that outshines all love to be present in our lives.
    Blessings.


    Thanks Nan.
    That is beautiful.
    Blessings.


    Dear Nan,
    Jesus loved so deeply that he gave himself for us, “the just for the unjust.” I pray that he will cause me to love with his kind of love.
    Jesus loved us humans so extra-ordinarily much that he “for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross…”
    Joy… endured the cross. Could anyone else could have that kind of love?
    I pray that, with his Spirit, we can at least approach that kind of love for his sake.
    Thank you for setting me onto this track.


    Hello, Nan: Wonderful! So needed at any time for each of us.

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