Have gone to the store and bought something with a twenty dollar bill?  When you handed it to the clerk did that clerk check to see if the bill was counterfeit by swiping it with a marker?   It is strange how something that you think is authentic can be faked.  The Federal Reserve goes to great lengths to make it impossible for people to copy and use.  But, yet there are people who produce counterfeit money and try to pass it off as if it was real.   Counterfeit money has no value compared to real money.  In fact, people who justify the use of counterfeit money eventually get caught and thrown into jail.  If you look at the subject of money close enough it becomes obvious that money has something so powerfully in common with Love that either one cannot function correctly without this being in place.  The word is authenticity.

During the past few weeks of Advent, we the Church have been traveling together preparing ourselves not only for the incarnation of Christ but for his second coming.  This week we focus our hearts on Love.  In just a few days we will be celebrating the birth of Christ.  It is a celebration of a birth that the world has been waiting for since the beginning of time.  The incarnation of Christ is a big deal for four reasons: first, so that we are reconciled to the Father; second, so that we have a model for holiness; third, so that we can be brought into the divine life of God; fourth, so that we can know God’s love for us and authentically return it.  The fourth reason is what ties everything together.  Authentic love is what this season is about.  Better yet, authentic love is what following Christ is all about.  In Paul’s letter John we read, “Beloved, let us love one another, because love is of God; everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God.  Whoever is without love does not know God, for God is love” (1 John 4:7-8).  Like the clerk at the store, we need to make sure that we are not working with a counterfeit version.  In a lot of ways the counterfeit versions of love come close to being passed off as the real thing.  We desire authentic love.  We were created because of it and we were created for it.  Now is the time for us to see the love that has been given to us from God and other people.  Now is the time for us to return the love back to God and others.

Be found prepared and waiting for Christ.

Reflection

Read: 1 Corinthians 13

What relationships in your life produce counterfeit love?

Is your love for God a counterfeit?

Is God’s love for you counterfeit?

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