Tuesday, November 21, 2006

The Love of God

Learning about the love of God this week. I realized I don't have any trouble at all believing that God loves me and there's a simple reason why: I have never doubted my daddy's love for me. It has been said that your view of your dad profoundly influences your view of God. Well, my daddy has shown me his love for me in a hundred different ways over time:

He tells me he loves me.
He takes time for me.
He listens to me.
He shares with me.
He protects me.
He delights in me.
He fights for me.
He has high expectations for my behavior.
He is gentle with me.
He treats me like a princess.

And that's just a few things I can think of off the top of my head. There is so much more I could list. And if my dad's love is so tangibly overwhelming, how much more the love of God!!

Would I ever sacrifice my own children for love of someone else? Never. But God did. "He who did not spare His own Son, but gave Him up for us all--how will He not also, along with Him, graciously give us all things?" (Romans 8:32)

God doesn't force me to follow Him. Quite the opposite. His way is best and His plan is best, and He longs for my heart to know that and to trust Him. So naturally He will make that clear to me in the most loving way possible, until eventually, "God's kindness leads me toward repentance."(Rom 2:4b)

And God loves me so much that He will tell me the truth. "...the Lord disciplines those He loves, as a father disciplines the daughter he delights in." (Prov 3:12b)

My favorite, though, is this: Jeremiah 31:3 says, "I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you to Myself with lovingkindness." God is pursuing relationship with me by being nice to me. How beautiful is that!

The Love of God is greater far
Than tongue or pen can ever tell
It goes beyond the highest star
And reaches to the lowest hell
The guilty pair, bowed down with care
God gave His son to win
His erring child He reconciled
And pardoned from his sin

Could we with ink the ocean fill
And were the skies of parchment made
Were every stalk on earth a quill and every man a scribe by trade
To write the love of God above would drain the ocean dry
Nor could the scroll contain the whole though stretched from side to side

O love of God, how rich and pure, how measureless and strong!
It shall forevermore endure the saints' and angels' song!

The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love! Psalm 145:8