The readings at Mass this week help us meditate on Epiphany and prepare for the feast of the Baptism of the Lord. Today's first reading states:
"In this is love, not that we have loved God,
but that he loved us,
and sent his Son as expiation for our sins." (1 John 4:10)
God's love for us is incredible and can be hard to fathom. God doesn't love us because we're good, but we're good because God loves us.
God loves us first, and we don't have the power to make him stop loving us, no matter what we do.
Of course, that doesn't mean that we can sin with abandon, or that sin doesn't matter. It certainly matters. It matters because even though sin can't make God stop loving us, it can make us stop loving God. And that is deadly. That is what can destroy our spiritual life and lead to unhappiness and tragic ends. God loves us so that we might love him in return. The more we do, the happier we are. Sin brings sadness because we know that we have rejected God's love, told him we don't want him in our lives. But as John says in another place in his letter, even if we sin, we have an advocate who intercedes for us with the Father: Jesus the Christ.