I changed the oil filter (or was it a petrol filter) in my lawn mower recently. You take the clogged up foam filter and dip it in petrol. Then you squeeze out the black mucky liquid and dip the filter again in fresh new clean petrol. The second time you squeeze out the fuel its less mucky. As you repeat the process it gets clearer and clearer. I guess you do it with those foam yellow and green washing up pads.
Anyway, I spoke at a weeding recently. Felt such a sense of privilege to be sharing from the bible at such an important moment in a couples lives. I spoke about how the more we receive God’s love the more we are enabled to love one another.
Just like the oil filter, we need to be bathed in God’s love but when we come to give it out it’s usually a bit grimy. God keeps pouring out his love on us and again we pass it on to others. This time it’s a bit clearer. As all the grot is getting flushed out of us and we love more and more like God loves us. The two keys though are making sure we are receiving God’s love into our lives and making sure we are giving it out into the lives of others. I can’t decide if it’s helpful to think of God squeezing us or not. Maybe it’s more just challenging circumstances or the cost of loving. You can think of it as being hugged by someone I guess.
The more I think about it I think it’s a petrol filter not an oil filter but the link to the holy Spirit is still there. The Holy Spirit is a bit like petrol anyway in terms of fire and power and cleaning and stuff. Anyway, the love of God is not an abstract idea it’s a tangible reality. The Holy Spirit is a Spirit of Love and is talked about in the bible as a liquid poured on us and also as a liquid we are baptised or plunged into. You could say that the love of God is liquid and that the Holy Spirit is liquid love. Is that ok to say? Not sure but there is something to think about there, especially next time you are changing the filter on your lawn mower or wiping down a surface in the kitchen.