Updated: Feb 25
As we gear up for February, let us focus on the love we are freely given. The love that shows up daily, actively pursuing us.
1 John 4:10
"This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins."
He's in the Everyday Moments
When I think of the word love, a lot of different things come to mind. I love Chris. I love my children. I love my parents. I love anything sweet. I love the beach. I love Disney, and so on. This list could literally go on forever. But, there’s one thing that comes to mind before all of these: God. I love Him, and He loves me and you and we know all of this, right?
But even more than that, I know His love is why I’m here today. His love is why I chose to drag myself out of bed and back to life after Carson died. His love is why we chose to “try again” after we lost Carson, and then to “try again,” after we lost our baby girl at ten weeks. His love kept me going as we said goodbye to our first foster child, which felt so much like saying goodbye to Carson again. His love is why Chris and I are still married today. His love pushes me forward, even when I’m digging my heels in the ground resisting (iykyk).
When we think about God, two images come to mind for a lot of us. Some think about Him high and mighty ready to judge us for not following “the rules.” Trying to live up to a law that died when Jesus came. And some of us think about Him hung on a cross, nails in hands and feet, dying a death that we deserve. Scripturally, we see both of these scenarios, but I’m here to remind you that He’s here too, in us, in our hearts when we accept Him.
He’s in the forgiveness we offer to others. He’s in the grace we allow ourselves to feel after failure. He’s with us in the heartache and hurt. He’s in the hand reaching for yours. He’s in the stranger that paid for your coffee or the $5 bill you found on the way to work. He’s in the “I love you’s” and the kindness of friends or family who reach out to you just because. He’s literally all around us, pursuing us, reaching for our hearts that are so focused on the love and approval of other people. I know I’m guilty of it. We all are to some extent, but as we enter into this month so focused on worldly love, this is your reminder that in those moments where you feel so loved or seen; or quite the opposite, in those moments when you feel unloved and unseen, remember that God is love, and He loves you more than human words, actions, or thoughts can even say. If you’re struggling this month with our world’s view of love, let me know and I’ll be praying specifically that God shows YOU His abounding and merciful love.
Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. 1 John 4:8 (HCSB) And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. 1 John 4:16
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
But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions - it is by grace you have been saved. Ephesians 2:4-5
The Holy Spirit also testifies to us about this: First he says: “This is the covenant I will make with them after that time, says the Lord. I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds.” Then he adds: “Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.” Hebrews 10:15-16
And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us. Romans 5:5