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The love of God. I deeply think about it, ponder it, wade through it, contemplate its depth and enjoy its fullness. The love of God is likely one of those mysteries this side of heaven that we will wrestle with until we are in the presence of Him who is Love Himself.
There is absolutely no human way to comprehend the enormous, eternal, all-encompassing, never-wavering, unconditional love of God. And yet, it is vital to spend our earthly existence trying to do just that.
“The greatest honor we can give Almighty God is to live gladly because of the knowledge of His love.”—Julian of Norwich
Prior to Calvary, there was no way that a human could fully enjoy the love of God. We simply weren’t good enough to penetrate the boundaries of God’s love. However, when Jesus died on the cross, He took God’s love for sinners outside of any constraints or boundaries. In a single, miraculous moment, Jesus made a way for you to access His love!
“So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled to all the fullness of God,” (Eph. 3:17–19).
The Holy Spirit, through the pen of Paul, is asking us to know the unknowable and to think about the incomprehensible. There is no longer a boundary line that denies your entrance into the love of God. It is a love that surpasses all depths, all heights, all lengths and all widths. There are no boundaries!
The words of Paul, in the book of Ephesians, had made a difference in this martyr’s life. On the wall of his small, dismal cell, this faithful soldier of Jesus Christ had scratched a rough cross with four words surrounding it in Spanish. Above the cross was the Spanish word for “height” and below it was the word for “depth.” The word for “length” was to the right of the chiseled cross and to the left was the word for “width.”
“That you…may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled to all the fullness of God” (Eph. 3:17–19).
The only way to measure the love of Christ is by the cross of Calvary. The “width” of His love implies that it goes to the utmost corners of the earth; the “length” communicates that it is as long as it is wide. How wide is the love of Christ? It goes to the ends of the earth!
Every other time that the particular word “height” is used in the New Testament, it refers to heaven. The love of Christ is as high as heaven!
The “depth” of Christ’s love Is ours in an inexhaustible abundance. We carry within us an immense amount of love to envelop our human souls while we live on Earth. We are the recipients of a love so extravagant and so immeasurable that it changes the way we talk, the way we think, the way we treat others and the way we live.
Jesus stopped breathing so that you would be breathless at His love. His heart stopped beating so that your heartbeat would quicken at the very thought of His love. He died so that you could live in His love.
Understanding the love of Christ will bring nourishment for your entire life, and it will give you a solid foundation upon which to build a life. When you know the love of Christ, you will know something that surpasses knowledge! Paul used the word for “know” that means to experience intimately. We must go beyond understanding the love of God with our minds to experiencing it personally. We are invited to be in a love relationship with God Himself.
The Jesus who died on the cross of Calvary loves you—and there is nothing you can do about it!
Carol McLeod is a best-selling author and speaker who encourages and empowers women with passionate and practical biblical messages mixed with her own special brand of hope and humor. Her commitment to reach women “by any means available” has made her a multimedia maven, with a thriving social media presence, two top podcasts, a weekly television program and even her own Carol McLeod Ministries mobile app. Released in 2022, “Meanwhile: Meeting God in the Wait,” Carol’s 15th book, examines the life of Joseph and what it means to truly wait well. Her best-selling book, “Rooms of a Mother’s Heart,” won the 2022 Director’s Choice Award from the Blue Ridge Writers Conference. In 2021, Carol was honored to receive Oral Roberts University’s prestigious “Alumna of the Year” award for distinguished service to God.