So yesterday, I suggested that being told we are loved by God doesn’t always feel good. There are a lot of different reasons for that to be the case. Sometimes guilt gets in the way. “I think I’ve messed up WAY too badly for God to love me.” Sometimes unbelief gets in the way. “I think that God loves everyone but me.” For some of us, it’s not God that’s the problem, it’s our definition of love. “Someone told me they loved me and then they hurt me.” “Someone told me they loved me and then they abandoned me.” “Someone told me they loved me and then they…” whatever your story is.
But the Truth is this: God Loves You. He absolutely does. He does not consider your past before deciding whether to love you. He knows your past and He loves you. He does not single you out to exclude you. He knows your name and He loves you. And He loves you the way love was meant to be done. He will never do anything to you that will harm you. He will never abandon you or walk away from you. Whatever that person did to hurt you in the name of love is exactly what God will never do to you. He holds you His hands and NOTHING can ever change that – not anything you do, not anything anyone else does. Don’t believe me? Check out Romans 8:38-39.
God loves you so much that He let His Son, Jesus, leave Heaven and every privilege that He had and come down here to this messed up, sorrow- and pain-filled earth. He let Jesus live down here and He let Jesus die down here. He let His Son be tortured and killed because there was no other way for Him to have a relationship with you. It’s only through the shed blood of Jesus that we can be forgiven for the lies we’ve told, for that time we disobeyed a parent, for that pack of gum we stole, for that mean thing we thought about that woman at the grocery store yesterday… Jesus’ shed blood covered all of that ugliness. And when, three days after He died, God brought Him back to full, bodily, literal life, the power of sin and guilt and shame and death was broken and we were set free from a prison we didn’t even know we were in.
We didn’t ask God to do any of that for us. He did it of His own free will because He loves us. Because He loves you.
Now I’m pretty sure the first song I ever learned was “Jesus Loves Me”. I’ve been hearing all of this from the time I was still sleeping in a crib. But there are still times that I doubt it’s true. There are times when I feel like my world is falling apart around me. I’m alone. I’m scared. I’m angry. The last thing I feel is loved. If anything, I feel like God has flipped His hand over and dropped me. I know you know what I’m talking about. There’s not a person on earth who has heard that God loves them who has not, at one point or another, doubted that it’s true. Eventually though, the truth breaks through the lies that satan is trying to feed me and I’m reminded (sometimes rather firmly) that God loves me. And when I finally accept that fact, I begin to see that He did not drop me. He did not leave me alone. He did not abandon me. Yes, things happened that hurt me or made me angry, but the whole time, I was wrapped up tight in my Father’s arms as He carried me through the pain and the hurt. When I come to that realization, I can finally and fully accept that God loves me. And it’s then that I can love Him back.
That’s my take. Now it’s your turn. Has God shown you recently that He loves you or are you still not so sure?