Have you ever heard the word “ineffable”? I stumbled over it a few months ago, and since I have an ongoing love affair with words, I looked it up. According to Webster, “ineffable” means, “Too great or extreme to be expressed in words.” I instantly knew this word belonged in front of “love of God.” The deeper you dive into God’s love, the more you realize you hardly grasp it at all! Mere words scarcely do justice to a love so deep and long and wide and high that even if we spend the rest of our lives getting lost in it, we’ll still have barely skimmed a bucketful off the surface of a great and mighty river.
But that doesn’t mean we don’t try. That doesn’t mean we won’t drink deeply. It just means that after we’ve drunk from Living Water, we’ll write a new favorite word, “ineffable,” on the front of our insignificant bucket in the hopes that others will stop and taste for themselves too.
Here are a few ways to describe what I have tasted and seen of enormous, too-great-and-extreme-to-be-expressed-in-mere-words Love—my bucket that I offer for you to take your own sip.
God’s love is grander than any human love we’ve ever seen, experienced, or offered. His love is so wide that you can never reach the other side of it. It’s so deep that once you jump in, you’ll drown forever in its depths. His love is so high that no pole vault or plane or catapult or rocket can reach beyond it. It’s so long that you’ll never outgrow or outlast it. (Ephesians 3:18)
God’s love is one hundred percent, no strings attached, no-need-to-work-for-it, free of charge. He loves you because He wants to love you, not because of anything you can do to deserve it or earn it. He loves you freely because His love is too precious and vast for any of us to ever hope to pay for it anyway. And He extends this love to you passionately and unconditionally. If God were into commercial guarantees, His would be the first and last to truthfully claim: “God’s love: always free, one hundred percent guaranteed!” (Ephesians 2:4–5, 8–9; John 15:9)
God’s love never changes. He is completely and totally head over heels for you no matter the day, no matter the hour, no matter what you happen to mess up or overcome at any particular moment. His love is the same. Always and forever. Period. (Psalm 136, Lamentations 3:22)
God’s love is in motion. Because God loves, He gives—freely, abundantly, above anything we ever ask or think. God so loves that He gave His Son for you, to redeem you, to forgive you, to restore you. And this Active Lover calls you, woos you, pursues you, and desires you to receive and bask in His great love. (John 3:16, Romans 5:8, John 1:12)
God’s love is for you. His love is not indiscriminate, blindly covering all in its path. God’s love is purposeful and highly selective. And He picked you! He longs for you and desires you. What’s behind all of that love is a desire for relationship, for the two of you to communicate, to enjoy each other, and to be together forever.
God’s love is also for you. He loves you so much that He is always on your side, rooting for you, wanting you to savor His best life for you. His love desires a full and victorious life for you right now. God’s love is PRO YOU. (1 John 4:9, Romans 8:31–39)
Who He Is
What’s more, this grand, unstoppable love stems from a place that makes jaws drop. God doesn’t just love really, really well, like some kind of amore expert. Love is His identity, His character, His very essence. His love can never stall or morph or lessen or grow cold because love is His very identity. To use His own words, God is love! (1 John 4:16)
So as you finish off the last couple chocolates and try to keep the roses alive for just one more day, may you delight in how God actually feels about you, and may you let the Greatest Love of All soak deeply into your heart.
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