God's Other Name

Hank Mattimore
Reproduced with Permission

The God I believe in has another name. The name is both simple and profound. Everybody knows what it means, because like the air we breathe, it is everywhere. God's other name is love.

God is love. He is the energy that gives life to our world, the spirit that warms us, and the fire that stirs our hearts. God is the magic of springtime, the miracle of birth, the power of the wind and waves.

God is the old man who comes to the nursing home every day without fail to visit his ailing wife, the kid who carries his little brother on his back, the cop who puts his own life at risk to save a person he does not even know.

God is the God of small things, too.

I dropped my foster grandson off at school today and said to him "Have a good one, sweetheart." Whoops! I caught myself. Did I really just call my strapping 18 year old kid…SWEETHEART?" Hurriedly, I opened the window and yelled after him, "Hey, sorry I called you sweetheart. He just smiled back at me. "It's okay. It's all good." And it was. That God, whose other name is love, makes you do sappy things and they turn out okay.

But love can go deep, too.

I heard a story recently about a young dad whose wife was killed in an auto accident. The man went into a deep depression. He wondered how he could possibly carry on being both dad and mom to his seven-year-old little boy. In despair, he locked himself in the bathroom and was holding a gun to his head when he heard his son's voice. "Hey dad, where are you? I need help with my homework."

Call it God or call it God's other name. Something, Someone penetrated the young dad's soul. He put the gun away. "No way, I can do this to my boy." He said, "I'll be right there, son." And he was. That's the kind of stuff we do when we love. Love is just another name for God.