I love, love, love the song “Reckless Love” but I have friends who find even the title offensive.
I tend not to get into debates with folks over things like that but this is one gauntlet I’m happy to bend down and pick up.
Because the word “reckless” has more than one meaning.
In this instance the lyrics don’t refer to crazy, undisciplined, random action but instead to abundant, overwhelming, extravagant action unrestrained by concern it may be rewarded in any way.
This is the love of God in Christ demonstrated by the cross and resurrection.
It was also the love shown by Joseph of Arimathea when he boldly petitioned Pilate for Jesus’ body, prepared it according to Jewish burial customs and placed it in his own (costly and newly hewn) tomb. By doing so he was declaring Jesus’ death an honorable one-an act that was akin to blasphemy or treason since Jesus had been labelled an enemy of God and of the Roman state.
It was totally reckless.
Joseph risked his reputation and possible his freedom to honor a dead man…Joseph of Arimathea gave Jesus his resting place. It was a treasured, costly space reserved for himself, but Joseph gifted it to Jesus. Further, Joseph gave this risk-laden treasure to Jesus at a time when Jesus could not-from Joseph’s perspective-do anything else for him.Alicia Britt Chole
I’m ashamed to say that I often withhold love, help and encouragement from others because I deem them unworthy or I fear being taken advantage of. What if they can’t return the investment?
Without getting into a theological debate, Jesus’ sacrifice was and is sufficient for ALL sin. His blood was poured out without regard to merit (because for whom would He have then died?). His love IS reckless-abundant, overwhelming, extravagant-without concern for whether or not it will be reciprocated.
And this same love is poured out on me and can be poured out through me if I respond to the Spirit’s call.
So today’s fast is withholding.
What part of my heart or life am I withholding from the One who died to save me?
What gift has He extravagantly given that I am hoarding?
Where am I damming up His goodness, mercy, grace and love instead of pouring it out on others?
Joseph’s actions stir something within me: an ache possible too deep for words….Whatever part of me I have reserved for me-for my self-I long to give it away to Jesus. When we offer to Jesus the place we have reserved for ourselves, He surprises us by filling that space with His resurrected life. By offering his resting place to Jesus, Joseph transformed a tomb from a place of death for himself into a place of victory for his God.Alicia Britt Chole