Can God’s Love Really Be “Reckless?”

There’s a popular Contemporary Christian Worship song that has been out for a few years now, called “Reckless Love,” written by Cory Asbury. The song was controversial to some at the time, and still is in some circles, as I understand.

I did not care for this song when I first heard it, probably like most people of my generation. So I put it on back burner and didn’t give it a lot of thought. But the song is seemingly everywhere (Michael W Smith recorded the song, for crying out loud), so I decided to look at the lyrics and study them closer.

First of all, looking online, at least 5 different dictionaries defined reckless with terms such as, “lack of proper caution, careless of consequences.” One added this, “The word reckless comes from the Old English word receleas, meaning ‘careless, thoughtless, heedless.’” I’m sure that that is a lot of people’s understanding of the word.

Another online dictionary said this, “If you say that someone is reckless, you mean that they act in a way which shows that they do not care about danger or the effect their behavior will have on other people.”

I got to thinking then about that particular definition, and tried to picture a “reckless love.” Perhaps someone heard that a loved one was in serious trouble, would they not tend to be a little reckless in getting to them, or trying to help them somehow? Perhaps a loved one had been in an accident; or imagine seeing one’s young child or grandchild who is about to walk into a busy street without paying attention; realizing a loved one has been a victim of some sort of catastrophe, such as a hurricane, a flood, a fire; on and on with whatever life constantly throws at us.

Then I wondered about Scripture backup. The word “reckless” is not a Biblical word that I could find, whether Hebrew or Greek, but I’m seeing it is there by example. Yeshua’s story of leaving the 99, and seeking the lost one (Luke 15:3-7), as sung about in the song, definitely (Cory Asbury explains that in this video, around 5:37). The cross – a huge definite act of reckless love, in the sense of the final definition above. In the parable of the prodigal son, also from Luke 15, the Father saw the son returning, and ran out to greet him. No doubt he was a little reckless in getting to his son.

Psalm 139 speaks of the “reckless love” of God – albeit not by that term – but it most definitely does speak into a holy recklessness: “Wherever I try to hide, You are there.” I’m thinking that this Psalm speaks not JUST into the Lord’s omnipresence, but perhaps more so into His desire to seek people out who are in trouble and needing Him. As at the beginning (Genesis 3:9): “Then the LORD God called to Adam and said to him, ‘Where are you?’” God knew, but He went “searching” for him anyway. David, author of this Psalm, understood his subject.

We all run, or have run, from the heart of our Father. Stop running, let Him embrace you. For some, probably most, of us, He’s had to be quite reckless to get to us.

Here is a link to the song, “Reckless Love,” by Cory Asbury. Hope you enjoy.

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