Thursday, November 5, 2015

God's Love for Us

Yesterday was, I am afraid, another one of "those days."

Jill is back in the office with me starting Tuesday, which is wonderful! And I'm going home two weeks from today, which is also wonderful!! But yesterday, thanks to a few other things as well, the emotions started snowballing quickly and early.

I'm so thankful that God reminded me to lean on Him in that moment, because if He hadn't, I am not sure if I would have made it through the day. Without Him, I am so weak!

But I did make it through, all by His Grace.

When we got to our weekly staff fellowship in the evening, one of our staff members came to share with us what she had recently learned at a conference about how to counsel people. But instead of jumping in to a list of things we should do, she went back to the beginning: reminding us that love is the goal of counseling others, and that "We cannot do that unless we are receiving God's love into our hearts regularly."

So instead of talking at us about how to help others, she gave us verses to meditate on as we opened up our hearts to God's love for us. Afterwards, this is what I wrote:

I am a child of God--Beloved and Precious. The child of a Prodigal God,* One who will spare NO expense in redeeming His people. He did it at the time of the Exodus (Deut. 7:7-8), He pursued His people through generations (Jer. 31:3), and He did it again through Jesus (Rom. 5:8).

God spared no expense. He poured out the most precious thing in the entire Universe: the blood of His Son (John 3;16). Because He loved us, because He loved me. Not because of any righteousness I had done or could ever do---my father's father's father's father for generations existed only in God's foreknowledge when Christ chose & pledged to make that ultimate sacrifice (Eph. 2:4-5). It is ALL by grace, all by His lavished love (1 John 3:1).

Lord, open the floodgates of my soul to Your love. Saturate me with You--mind, heart, body & soul--so that when life squeezes me and jostles me, it is Your love which overflows.

*This idea comes from Tim Keller's book of the same name, in which he points out that the real meaning of "prodigal" is extravagant, although the "parable of the prodigal son" often makes us think of it in terms of wandering from home. In that book, Tim Keller shows how the parable is really about the Prodigal Father (God) who rejoices so much in us.

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