“We were made not primarily that we may love God (though we were made for that too) but that God may love us, that we may become objects in which the Divine love may rest ‘well pleased.'”
~C.S. Lewis (in The Problem of Pain)
I encountered this quote on Facebook this morning, and it’s been on my mind all day. I’ve often heard it said that God loves us, but the emphasis has always been on the expectations that fact places on me for how I should respond. This turns the focus completely around.
And that makes all the difference, doesn’t it?
I read this quote this morning and wept in relief as I felt that gaping, empty hole inside me begin to fill with Divine love as I let down my walls enough to consider the possibility. I spend so much time and effort trying to win love, acceptance, approval, respect from others in what I do and say. While I am likely rather extreme in this need of these things from others, I suspect I am not totally alone. I suspect that most people seek these same things from others, even if they do so in much milder ways.
But what if we were all primarily made just to be loved by God? What if nothing else is required?
Even as I’ve pondered the possibility of this kind of love today, I’ve noticed my own heart responding naturally with a love for God. I can also begin to see how this would overflow into love for others as my neediness decreases to make their potential disapproval less threatening and as I become increasingly aware that they were also primarily made to be loved by God as I was. As I allow myself to be filled with the Divine love that I was made for, that Divine love can overflow from its vessel in me to the vessel for Divine love that is them.
If I were to live as if my primary purpose was to be loved by God and I were to fully embrace and accept that love, it would change everything. That one belief fully accepted would transform my life.
Which makes me wonder … what if salvation is not about accepting a creed, changing my behavior, or following any particular set of “rules”? What if salvation was simply opening myself to the Divine love that seeks me and allowing it to be my primary purpose? What if salvation is only about embracing my primary purpose and so being transformed by God’s love?
I’m not a theologian, and I don’t know the answers. But I do know that every time I consider this possibility of being loved like this that another part of my heart cracks open to allow that Divine love to flood in and tears of gratitude and healing flow. And that may be salvation enough for me.
A Note on Comments: A chrysalis is by nature a fragile and vulnerable place to be, so I am committed to keeping this a safe place for me and for my readers. Comments sharing your own journey, even if your experience is different from mine, are always welcome and encouraged. Expressions of support or encouragement are also welcome. Comments that criticize, disparage, correct, or in any way attempt to undermine the validity of another person’s experience or personal insight are not welcome here and will be deleted.