Have you ever felt so broken and alone that not even God's love could or would mend your heart?
Perhaps, even as a friend of Christ, you've felt lost without hope of being found.
Before receiving God into my life, I, too, felt that despair. However, it was His love, initially unbeknownst to me, that changed all that.
What follows is a live performance music video. It will help explain how God's love finds people like you and me who are broken, lost, and spiritually poor, and how, with His grace, He brings us home.
And if you feel inclined to keep reading, you will learn a bit about how God became my Savior.
Video: Reckless Love
Here's an emotionally charged live performance by Cory Asbury singing Reckless Love during Bethel Music's Heaven Come Conference 2017.
Reckless Love Explained
During his performance, Asbury, who is attributed with songwriting credit for Reckless Love, unpacks what he means by the song's title and message.
"When (we) use the phrase, the "reckless love of God..." we're not saying that God himself is reckless... We are, however, saying that the way he loves is, in many regards, quite so. But what I mean is this: he's utterly unconcerned with the consequences of his actions with regard to his own safety, comfort, and well-being. [...]His love doesn't consider himself first. It isn't selfish or self-serving. He doesn't wonder what He'll gain or lose by putting Himself on the line. He simply puts himself out there on the off-chance that you and I might look back and give Him that love in return.His love leaves the 99 to find the one every time. To many practical adults, that's a foolish concept. What if He loses the 99 in finding the one? What if finding that one lost sheep is and will always be supremely important?His love isn't cautious. It's the love that sent His own Son to die a gruesome death on a cross. [...] He gives His heart so completely, so preposterously, that if refused, we would think it irreparably broken. Yet He gives Himself away again, and again, and again, and again, time and time again."- Cory Asbury
Is God's Love "Reckless"?
Initially, after hearing Asbury's performance, I struggled with the idea of God's love being "reckless" because reckless is synonymous with rash, irresponsible, and ill-advised.
But after listening to Asbury's explanation for the term, I've come to enjoy the idea; that God's love disregards the danger of being rejected to save a lost child.
Isn't that pursuit, without fear of consequence, the ultimate display of a Father's love? To find and save the lost one?
To make it personal, have you been that lost one?
I have. And when saved, I was too blind to see that it was God that found me.
In a moment, I'll share a bit more on that.
First, is the parable referenced in the Reckless Love song lyric, "(God's love) chases me down, fights 'til I'm found, leaves the ninety-nine."
In Jesus' lesson, He tells the story of why God searches for people like you and me.
The Parable of the Lost Lamb
1 Many dishonest tax collectors and other notorious sinners often gathered around to listen as Jesus taught the people. 2 This raised concerns with the Jewish religious leaders and experts of the law. Indignant, they grumbled and complained, saying, “Look at how this man associates with all these notorious sinners and welcomes them all to come to him!”3 In response, Jesus gave them this illustration:4–5 “There once was a shepherd with a hundred lambs, but one of his lambs wandered away and was lost. So the shepherd left the ninety-nine lambs out in the open field and searched in the wilderness for that one lost lamb. He didn’t stop until he finally found it. With exuberant joy he raised it up and placed it on his shoulders,[a] carrying it back with cheerful delight! 6 Returning home, he called all his friends and neighbors together and said, ‘Let’s have a party! Come and celebrate with me the return of my lost lamb. It wandered away, but I found it and brought it home.’”7 Jesus continued, “In the same way, there will be a glorious celebration in heaven over the rescue of one lost sinner who repents, comes back home, and returns to the fold—more so than for all the righteous people who never strayed away.”Luke 15:1-7 (The Passion Translation)
Being someone who has felt broken, lost, and alone, the parable above really hits me.
How great is God's love that He'll trust in the flock's safety to leave them to find his lost child? Even now, typing the powerful message in that last sentence, I'm moved to tears.
While I'm no longer lost and have been found by God's grace, I can see plenty of other people I know who are "the one."
Because I've known pain similar to their's, my heart, filled with prayer, goes out to those men, women, and children.
During many years spent active in substance abuse, I experienced my own pain, aloneness, and blindness to God.
How God Found & Gave To Me His Reckless Love
Over half of my life, I spent active in substance abuse. Those were twenty-plus years of running from fear, pain, angst, and hurt.
And they were also twenty-plus years of being lost.
There came a time during that season of my life that I woke (or, more accurately, came-to) every day telling myself that that day would be the day I stopped the abuse.
And within hours, I'd be back to the drinking or whatever else I used to run and hide.
For at least the last five years of that long season spent being lost, I tried and tried to stop but simply could not.
Then, without burdening you with all the details, one day, I did stop. Everything. No more alcohol. No more drugs. Not even tobacco.
Every single addiction with which I was afflicted was lifted from me. And I couldn't have told you why.
Looking back now, I know that it was God that removed my addictions.
He didn't make a grand spectacle of it, He just did it.
And He did it all out of His reckless love for rescuing His lost sheep, a sheep that didn't see His grace or acknowledge His love.
Nearly eight years later, when I received God into my life, I saw how He worked in me to remove from me my sins and bring me into His flock.
God, my Lord, my Savior, my Father, my friend, left the 99 to search for me, to find me, to save me, and to love me.
It took years for me to return His love, and I'm so happy that I finally did.
Thank you, God, for your reckless love. I love you, too.
How do you feel about the term "reckless love," and how have you been the one He's searched for?