For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory
that has overcome the world—our faith.

1 John: 5: 4

At the end of the day that is life, the things that will still be standing are the things
that are from deep inside of us. These are the character and care oriented
values that are expressed in the relationships that we have with other people;
this is the love that we genuinely express to others.

The ability to love well and to love deeply is not a very human characteristic, for
we usually want to feel secure in what we will get back when we give deeply. We
desire the security of knowing that others will step toward us when we open up
to them; thus, we hold back and wait on the other person before risking
ourselves. And this reluctance to enter into relationships with others and to
be the one who takes the risk of reaching out to the other person is one of the
ways that evil wins in this world.

Yet, stepping out of safety and into relationship is exactly what Jesus did; He left
the known and set aside His position to become one of us, and He opened His
arms to embrace us all. He opened His heart to love everyone of us
totally, and Jesus did this before any of us demonstrated the first glimmers of
love for Him in return.

When we accept Christ and agree to let His love reside in us, we gain an eternal
victory over the forces of evil that try to keep us in fearful captivity
and that make wariness our approach to life. One of the hardest aspects of
all of this is that we are asked to do something that runs counter to intuitive
behavior, for we are asked to accept that God’s love for us is real although we
don’t see Him with our eyes. We are asked to move toward God by accepting the
call of Jesus to enter into a love relationship with Him without feeling His
touch on our skin. God asks us to have faith in Him and to accept the
testimony of thousands and millions of people who throughout history
have expressed the reality of God’s love for them. For me, God is
very visible; my heart knows that He has stepped into my life and that He
loves me completely; and my heart sees Christ in my life daily. We are all
called to be lovers of others, not for our own sakes but so that everyone
might get to know the perfect love that comes through knowing God. We are all
called to have the faith that is required to step toward Christ’s calling and
to open our arms and our hearts to others so that they might see Him, too.