You've heard it before. "God is love." While this is a true statement, it doesn't tell the whole story. Usually this gets brought up in awkward discussions about life, culture and the choices we make. By declaring that God is love during these conversations, some of us intend to shut out the thoughts and comments we don't agree with. It's fine to disagree, but let's make sure we're representing God the right way.
During the 1960s, America experienced a new meaning being given to the term "free love" as our cultural traditions were being challenged left and right. Though God's love has always been free and available to us, some people in the 60s sought to teach us that free love meant simply enjoying the moment, with no further commitments or consequences. It soon became common to see and hear about physical relationships with no strings attached. Given that this is part of our cultural heritage, it's not that big of a stretch for some to also see God's love as having no strings attached.
But though some people may get some comfort from a thought like that, it's not reality. And the problem with treating our relationship with God as having no strings attached is that we keep him at arm's length, never allowing the relationship to go deeper than the surface. God's love actually does have strings attached, but the good news is that they're the right kinds of strings. These attachments include grace-driven accountability, healthy boundaries and proper expectations.
I encourage you today to allow God's strings to attach to you fully, in every area of your life. These strings aren't the nooses or tourniquets our culture would have us believe. Instead, these strings are lifelines that keep us rightly related to our Heavenly Father. Remember, though God loves us just the way we are, he also loves us too much to leave us that way.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.
–Proverbs 3:5-6 (ESV)