Treasure In Earthen Vessels

Discovering the Indwelling Holy Spirit

Just For Love It Was Done March 20, 2013

The words of a song run through my head again and again. Like water over a falls, they keep coming and coming—“Just for love it was done.”

 

That single line from the song Broken and Spilled Out1 drives me to take a fresh look at the familiar story told in Matthew 26. Mary broke that alabaster box of rare perfume—her own special treasure—and spilled it out on Jesus only days before His crucifixion. The song says she lavished it on him. One of the meanings of lavished is heaped. Picture that—heaping something on Jesus.

 

The second verse of the song reverses the concept:  God gave His own special treasure—His beloved Son—and poured Him out for me. It too was lavished, or heaped on me. The whole idea baffles me, but the words that continue to pour through my mind are the reason God heaped this special treasure on me:  Just for love it was done!

 

Just for love it—with it being the garden, the sleeping friends, the betrayal kiss, the cock-crowing denial, the false accusers, the illegal trial, the scourging, the thorny crown, the heavy cross, the climb up Golgotha, the nails, the mocking, the jeering, the spit, the tossed dice, the mother’s broken heart. It, all of it —was done just for love.

 

How could God love me that much? Me—a sinner, a betrayer, a less-than-faithful follower, a denier, a failure! It just doesn’t make sense. If I were a prize or maybe some great person, but I’m not. God only knows how many times I’ve tried and failed to live holy; made the promise again; then broke it again.

 

I can’t get my mind around those words.  “Just for love it was done” doesn’t require a condition of greatness by the object that is loved; they simply reveal the character of the Lover.

 

“There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. All have turned away; they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one2….For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”3

 

I am among the “all,” one of the “worthless.” Yet, just for love it was done. How am I to respond to such love? The only thing that seems suitable is returning in-kind love. In-kind means to give something that is equivalent to what has been received.

 

Is that not exactly what God longs for –those who will receive His love and respond in-kind? After all, what else can we give God in return? We have no money or possessions for they all belong to Him.4 Even our days are in His hands; our children on loan. What can I give in return for that kind of love?

 

In-kind love. Equivalent love. Am I capable of giving equivalent love?

 

“Her sins, which are many, are forgiven; for she loved much: but to whom little is forgiven, the same loves little.”5

 

Could seeing and assessing my own depravity be the key to loving God much? To giving Him equivalent love?

 

Depravity is a word that demands exploration. Rejected by human reasoning, it could be the very key that unlocks the mysteries of God for us. We must carefully peel away the layers from around it lest we miss the tremendous value that awaits us within this one single word. ~ Janie Kellogg

 

 

1Broken and Spilled Out ~ written by Gloria Gaither and Bill George; 2Romans 3:10-12; 3Romans 3:23;   4Deutronomy10:14; 5Luke 7:47

 

 

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4 Responses to “Just For Love It Was Done”

    • Thanks for visiting my blog and for the kind comment. I just read your post “The Overseer of our Soul” and enjoyed it very much. I will be checking out more of your writings. God bless you too!

  1. Peggy Taylor Says:

    Janie,
    I want you to know I appreciate your Blog. I recently lost my dad(I cannot call him my father, because he always told me I had only one Father. And that was GOD.) He was the most precious man I have ever known. He had his faults as we all do, but he prayed continually and taught me alot. I had read the scripture where it says to pray continually, but this man lived it. He was 99 years young, and would have been 100 June 13th of this year.
    I told you all of this because a couple of years ago my sister started telling lies on my dad. I had a very hard time dealling with it. She didn’t come to see him when he was in the hospital with pneumonia (the week and a half before he passed). She left for a cruise the day my dad died. I went off on her and said things I shouldn’t have. Because I was hurt!!!!
    Long story short. You had on your blog the next day about forgiveness, it hit me in the face like a lead balloon. I wrote her back and had to tell her I was sorry. If GOD can forgive me of all my short comings, who am I to hold something against my own blood. She has not said anything back to me, and that is okay. I hope you will pray with me to remove the hurt and the damage that was done by those lies. God bless you and remember me and my family in your prayers.

    • Peggy, I appreciate your honest comments. Honesty is not easy to admit or share. I know God will bless you for the forgiveness you have now extended to your sister. Nothing sets us free like obeying God’s word and setting others free. It is always humbling to hear that God used my writing in some small way to help someone else. Thanks again for sharing. God bless you and your family, and I will pray for all of you.


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