The day was a tragedy for chocolate lovers.
A tanker truck carrying 3,500 gallons of liquid chocolate overturned and spilled its contents across Interstate 40, just west of Flagstaff, Arizona. The 40,000 pounds of hot (120 degree F) chocolate covered all three west bound lanes of the highway and stopped traffic for hours. The sweet chocolate syrup had to be hosed off the highway into the adjacent ditches. The Arizona Department of Public Safety described the spill as “a river of chocolate.” Sounds like the river of chocolate in Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory is not so far-fetched.
Think of all the good things that have been spilled across our highways in the last few years—milk, chocolate, bread, eggs, lunchmeat, frozen chicken, etc. Yet all of it goes to waste—especially if it’s food that gets dumped. No one can resell broken packages of food. Liquids like milk and chocolate are completely unrecoverable. It’s sad that something so sweet like chocolate and as nutritional as milk should be wasted in such vast quantities.
The Love of God
Yet nothing is sweeter than the love of God. Nothing is more nurturing and health-giving than God’s love. And God pours out His love daily into our lives. That’s what Paul the apostle said in Romans 5:5. God has invested His love into our salvation without measure or restraint. God’s love drove Him to hand over the Son of His love to be abused and murdered by humanity.
This should have aroused God’s wrath, but His love turned the death of His Son into the supreme redemptive act (Rom. 5:6–10). According to God’s predetermined plan Jesus bore the sin of humanity upon the cross (1 Pet. 2:24; 3:18). Then God poured out the full fury of His wrath and judgments upon Jesus instead of us (Rom. 3:24–26).
Since Jesus then satisfied God’s holy justice, God raised Him from the dead (Rom. 4:25). Then, because of His love, God sent His Holy Spirit into the world to turn the hearts of people to Himself (John 16:8). Those who respond to the Holy Spirit and open their hearts to Jesus, are born again by the Spirit and cleansed of their sins (John 3:3–8; 1 Pet. 1:3, 23). And God’s love continues to preserve the faith of these believers and make them fit for heaven.
Wasting God’s Love?
But can God’s love be wasted—as those 3,500 gallons of sweet chocolate were completely wasted? That’s something we ourselves determine. God poured out His love upon us to save us. If we resist His Holy Spirit and treat His Son with contempt, then, yes, God’s love and efforts to save us have been wasted.
How tragic! Humanity is desperately in need of God’s love. Our souls are starved, wounded, and bleeding. The sweet healing properties of God’s love could cure us in an instant. And God is not stingy with His love. He pours it freely upon our thirsty souls.
Yet we reject it. Somehow, our twisted minds believe there’s some kind of merit in not quenching our thirst and not satisfying our hunger. We deem it a crutch to rely on God for anything—as though we don’t already have plenty of other crutches. Yes, we have loads of crutches. We rely upon air to breathe. We depend upon water to drink and food to eat.
“But that’s different,” you say. “We’re designed to need those things. Those are physiological needs.”
And, also, God created and designed us for Himself. Therefore we naturally hunger and thirst for Him. And since we live in such an injurious and hurtful world, we should feel that need for God’s love all the more keenly.
The Filling Religion
That’s why people in every culture around the world are religious. People hunger for God in Stone Age cultures. But they also hunger for God in Information-Age cultures. Just as people crave for air, water, and food regardless of how sophisticated or primitive they are, so people yearn for God everywhere. Humanity is incurably religious. Shouldn’t that clue us into the reality that we were made for God? That nothing of this material world can satisfy our souls?
So why deny yourself of that which heals and satisfies? There is no merit in going thirsty or hungry or being miserable. Don’t let God’s love go to waste. “Taste and see that the Lord is good. Happy is the person who takes refuge in Him” (Ps. 34:8). Jesus said, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to Me shall not hunger. Whoever believes in Me shall never thirst” (John 6:35).
Dear Father in heaven, I open my heart and my life to You. Please fill me with Your love. Cleanse me of my sins. Heal my wounded heart and satisfy my thirsty soul. I cling to Your Son, Jesus Christ, for salvation. Save me, I pray, for Jesus’ sake. Amen.