Sunday 3 April 2022

Lent Reflection #5 - Loving Unconditionally

looking again
learning graciously
leaving deliberately
laughing innocently
and  now #5
loving unconditionally

Rosie was explaining to me that she was learning about Easter at school. "We have seen Part 1 of a film, and we will see part 2 later" She was a little vague, but she told me that bad people had hurt Jesus and killed him, and she was looking forward to learning the rest of the story. 

"But do you know, Grandma - Jesus loved everybody, even the bad people who didn't love him, and the ones who hurt him..." 

I told her that was one of the most important parts of the story, and I was really pleased she had learned that. We talked about the people we knew, and the love between families and friends.

Children often say things like "I love my Auntie, she always buys me sweets" - and it seems as if their affection is dependent on what they receive from the other person. As adults, we learn to recognise that often love is given even when there is no 'reciprocation'. A mother loves her tiny baby even when that little bundle seems to scream, or vomit or fill nappies all day long - and the blissful cuddles and gurgles and smiles are few and far between.

I know families where there is much love for somebody with Alzheimer's who no longer even recognises the carer as their daughter/ spouse/ sibling. And sometimes the AS causes the sufferer to be cruel in their words or actions. Yet the family still loves and cares despite their own heartache. I'm reminded of the Hollies' song "He ain't heavy, he's my brother"

"But do you know - Jesus loved everybody, even the bad people who didn't love him, and the ones who hurt him...

In the gospels we read

This is my command: Love one another the way I loved you. This is the very best way to love. Put your life on the line for your friends. You are my friends when you do the things I command you. 

You’re familiar with the old written law, ‘Love your friend,’ and its unwritten companion, ‘Hate your enemy.’ I’m challenging that. I’m telling you to love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the supple moves of prayer, for then you are working out of your true selves, your God-created selves. This is what God does. He gives his best—the sun to warm and the rain to nourish—to everyone, regardless: the good and bad, the nice and nasty. If all you do is love the lovable, do you expect a bonus? Anybody can do that. If you simply say hello to those who greet you, do you expect a medal? Any run-of-the-mill sinner does that.

Lord, help me to learn what it means to truly love others as Jesus did - whole-heartedly and unconditionally 


  1. Lovely post, Angela. Yes, to love unconditionally or, at least, to feel kind and compassionate, unconditionally.

  2. Yes, Rosie's got the gospel message pretty clearly...out of the mouths of babes ...

  3. I'm delighted to hear that Rosie is being taught so well at school, making it easy for you to reinforce the message of unconditional love. What an amazing world it would be if we all loved unconditionally, no "ifs, ands or buts".


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