Psalm 139:1 “O Lord, you have searched me and known me!” [ESV]
Our daughter Bethany sought to learn Mandarin when she was dating her husband (who is of Asian descent). My friend Theresa wants to learn Spanish so she can better help Spanish-speaking people who apply for mortgage loans at her work. YWAM missionaries in Pittsburgh run basketball camps and cosmetology clinics to connect to the lives of inner-city kids. My brother leaves a beautiful bouquet of flowers for me to enjoy while I spend a few days immersed in writing at his cottage. What do all these have in common?
The desire to speak love in a language each recipient can understand.
Since Gary Chapman’s book The Five Love Languages came on the scene over 20 years ago we’ve become more aware of how different people experience love, well, differently. Speaking someone’s love language means caring enough about them to get into their world.
No one has done this more profoundly, more powerfully, than Jesus. Listen to how it’s described in The Message: (Philippians 2:7)
When the time came, he set aside the privileges of deity and took on the status of a slave, became human! Having become human, he stayed human. It was an incredibly humbling process. He didn’t claim special privileges.
Talk about learning a love language! Jesus paid an inestimable price to get into our world. He knows more about you than you know yourself. He understands what ticks you off and what makes you tick. He remembers the worst day of your life as well as your sweetest memory. He smiles at your quirks and cheers at your successes. It may be hard to believe, but he actually likes you (as they say) warts and all.
He speaks your love language because he loves you. And because he knows you, he can speak to you up close and personal. This comes not only as good news, but as “knowledge too wonderful.” It moves the Psalmist to respond with unrestrained vulnerability. “Search me, O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts!” (Psalm 139:6;23)
The God who knows all about us yet loves us enough to speak our language should provoke in us the same kind of trust. But don’t take my word for it. Go ahead and tear down your defenses, open your heart, say with abandon….
Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening…