“… that Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that you, rooted and grounded in love, may have power…to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:17-19, RSV)
How do we “know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge”? By experiencing it, by living in it; by being firm, constant, fixed and strengthened with roots – deep roots. In the 15th chapter of the Gospel of John, Jesus calls this “abiding”, and assures his disciples that they’re powerless and useless unless they are rooted and grounded in his love, that love which is the very life of God.
“We love because he first loved us” says St John in his first epistle, and he should know – he’s the “disciple whom Jesus loved“! (see the Gospel of John chapters 13, 18, 19 and 21). St John writes about love so deeply and profoundly because he experienced that divine love. As we likewise experience that divine love – so merciful, generous, humble, and unmerited – we are purified of needing to strive selfishly to meet our own “needs”, for we know ourselves to be held safely and lovingly in the care of a Father who wants only our good. We recognize in our crucified Savior a love so far above anything merely human that we realize, “He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all – how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things?” (Romans 8:32).
The deeper we sink our roots into the love of God in Christ – experiencing it in our very core – the freer we will become from egoism and the malignancy of “self”, that innate cancer which consumes us and disables our ability to love others. To receive Love Himself is the cure; when we are more and more “filled with all the fullness of God”, there is less and less room for the tyrant of the self.
Let yourself be loved! A boundless supply is available to those who anchor themselves in the love of Jesus Christ and put down deep roots, drawing up nourishment for their own souls and providing even the power and will to love others with that same love.