In one of my first interviews post college, the hiring authority asked me what my greatest ambition was. I answered, “To be fully understood.”

Who (in their right mind?) answers a job interview question like that? They were certainly looking for my aspirational career goals – or expecting to hear me say that I wanted to write the next great American novel, climb Mt. Everest, or lead a thriving organization. But, in my naïve, inexperienced self, I answered what was on my heart at that moment. To be fully known.

I think my younger self knew something that it’s taken my older self many more seasons to grasp. Being fully understood – and accepted and loved in light of (or in spite of) that – is deeply imbedded in the heart of all of us.

Genesis 1:27 say “God created man (and woman) in His own image” and Psalm 139 says that our “Creator knit us together in our mother’s womb”.

1 John 3:18-20 says “My dear children, let’s not just talk about love; let’s practice real love. This is the only way we’ll know we’re living truly, living in God’s reality. It’s also the way to shut down debilitating self-criticism, even when there is something to it. For God is greater than our worried hearts and knows more about us than we do ourselves”.

If God truly knows more about us than we do ourselves – created us in His image - and LOVES us radically – demonstrating it with the ultimate sacrifice - For what purpose?

1 John answers “…This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son….Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us."

The desire to be known and understood – and truly loved – was given to me by God. And I imagine you share that same desire. And if we each do, what will it look like for us to accept and commit to grow in love and understanding with others - without condition? Without prejudice? What changes will our communities, neighborhoods and families experience when we practice “real love” to others (and to ourselves?) What freedom will we bring to people’s lives when they are met with open doors, open arms, and real love, instead of scrutiny, judgment, rejection, and ridicule? If we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us…

Chris Yarco
Lead Executive