A dictionary definition of ‘love’ is ‘an intense feeling of deep affection.’ With God I believe it goes deeper than that. With God it’s His supreme sacrifice. He demonstrated His ultimate love for us when He sent His Son to save us from the consequences of sin and establish us in a living relationship with Him. ‘This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins’ (1 John 4:10).
God said, “I have loved you with an everlasting love. With unfailing love I have drawn you to myself” (Jeremiah 31:3). The love of God is overwhelming and unconditional. It is constant with no variation. It’s not a reward for good behaviour or God being pleased with us, but an outward expression of His very nature. He cannot help but love us, because He is love. We may let Him down in so many ways and cause Him much disappointment, but we’re still surrounded by His love. Imagine a deep pool of water. We can jump into it and be completely immersed, or we can stand on the edge and wonder. The choice is ours. It doesn’t go away. It’s always there, ready and waiting.
Love is not something which creeps up on us quietly. God said, “I have loved you.”. This is not just for now, or for some time in the future. It has always been in existence. ‘For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight, in love he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ’ (Ephesians 1:4-5). Even before we were born, even before the earth was created, He knew us and loved us. We were to be the fulfilment of His purpose which was completed on the cross, by which we are restored to Him again.
‘I have loved you with an everlasting love.’ Only eight words, but they span an eternity we can’t even begin to understand, far beyond the range of human experience. They sum up the whole purpose of God, past, present and future, an unending love, now and forever. ‘God so loved the world that He gave.’ The pool doesn’t dry up.
Wherever we are we can’t get away from it. We don’t deserve it. We can’t earn it. It’s for all people, and nothing can take it from us, not even our sin, because that’s what the cross was all about.
Can we understand the ways of God? There’s no point in trying to work it all out. Let’s jump into that pool today and get soaked. We may not feel we’re ready and that we need to cleaner. But does our laundry get cleaned before it goes into the washing machine?
As we immerse ourselves in His love, God reaches out to receive us. He’s paid the price. Now He wants to do more. He wants to give us the Kingdom (Luke 12:32).
Prayer: Lord, where can I run to from Your love? Where can I hide? Let me not even consider it. Let me live in it day by day. I need more of You, Lord. Show me how I can soak up the full extent of Your love for me that it would overflow on to all around me. Help me to walk in Your grace, Your presence and Your peace. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
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