Wednesday, February 28, 2007

What's love got to do with it?

No, I haven't given up on the previous post topic. I've been racking my brain and processing aloud trying to figure out where Bev and I have gotten our wires crossed. She seems to be reacting strongly to something I don't believe I have said. So I've mentioned this to several other people and there seems to be a recurring theme to the reactions I've gotten.

Somehow, people seem to be equating one's intention with one's self - hence the idea that an unfulfilled intention being irrelevant is passing judgement negatively on the person who formed the intention.

I don't buy it.

I am not my intentions. I am their originator, and I am responsible for them, but they are not me.

One reaction I had - and it really confused me as it caught me off guard - was, as I was trying to explain things:" oh, so you don't have a problem with God loving you, you just have a problem with loving yourself..." What?! I'll admit to having had self-image issues, but where did love come into the equation? I never said anything about love.

Another pulled out Song of Solomon and told me that intentions counted because" just one glance of my eye was enough to steal God's heart". Well, A: Song of Solomon is allegorical, so I'd be careful just how dogmatic I was about any interpretation, B: Unless my intention was to steal God's heart I don't see how this applies, and C: are we confusing attitude with intention?

I also was given "David was a man after God's heart". The point made here was that David messed up a lot but God still loved him because he pursued Him. Again, I don't see the connection. I love my kids regardless of whether their intentions are good or bad - and I don't love them more when they're good. I may feel other things, like pride, when I see good intentions - particularly those acted on - but my love for them doesn't change.

So, could someone please walk me through this thought process? Give me the scriptural supports and the logical progression of thought for this connection. I believe I've done a lot of digging and given plenty of backing for my point. I've defined my terms, given examples, and provided a fair bit of scriptural evidence (including context) for my point. So, in case you have forgotten it (we did get a bit off topic during the last conversation) the main point was: good intentions only have value when they are fulfilled, otherwise they are irrelevant - note: the intentions, not the person, and irrelevant, not bad. The main sub-point would be that although God does look at the heart, He does not only look at the heart - actions matter and will be judged also.

Just as another reference for that final point:

I Corinthians 3:10 By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should be careful how he builds. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ. 12 If any man builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, 13 his work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each man's work. 14 If what he has built survives, he will receive his reward. 15 If it is burned up, he will suffer loss; he himself will be saved, but only as one escaping through the flames.

Oh, and Bev, I'll take up the topic of shame in another post. I want to do my research and give you the backup for my thoughts. Feel free to do the same.