God is Love

For many years Bethania had the words ‘God is love’ in English and in Welsh painted above the archway at the front of the church. When the church was decorated just over a year ago, it was necessary to paint over those words. But they were missed. ‘Doesn’t God love Bethania any more?’, someone asked.
So recently, using transfer wall art, the words ‘God is Love’ and ‘Duw Cariad Yw’ were reinstated on the front wall of Bethania. They remind us of the heart of our faith. Love is not a chance by-product of random matter and energy. Love comes before all things because it is in the very nature of the Creator of the universe. Love did not come into existence when the first beings capable of feeling and acting evolved. Those beings – whether on this planet or elsewhere – simply discovered something that had always been there. Love is truly Eternal.
But what is love? In Christian thinking love is much more than a feeling of attraction. Love means wanting what is good and beneficial for another person. To say that God loves us is to say that God cares about us and wants what is best for us. Another Bible verse that is very precious to the people at Bethania is Jeremiah 29:11 – “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
Believing that God is love gives us a solid basis for our lives. Firstly, we can live with confidence and self-respect because we know that we are loved. Secondly, God’s unconditional love provides us with a steady moral compass in our relationships and actions. And thirdly, we know that we can experience the love of God, together with the joy and peace that accompanies it, through our prayer and worship.
‘God is love. Duw Cariad Yw’. May those words not only be written on our walls but in our hearts. 
Revd James