LMKTM: The Love of God
It was when my two sons, the beautiful William Joseph and the amazing David Gavin, came into this world, that the question of what I really believed about God’s love hit me like a ton of bricks. I was literally overwhelmed with the love I felt for these new little lives. They were so pure, so perfect, so lovely. I wanted nothing more than to protect them and provide for them, and to make sure they felt loved for the rest of their lives. And then, a thought: God loves me as His own child.
But do I really believe that? Can it be true?
Somewhere along the road in life, I had learned that God loving me did not exempt me from suffering or struggle. It did not mean I would never hurt (physically or emotionally), and it did not mean that my life would avoid all the pitfalls of sadness, only to shine forth in a happy, glowing existence. No, this is not what God’s love means. And yet, in my reconciliation with that reality, I had let go of the beauty that is the Father’s love for me. What a shame.
Why was it so hard for me to accept that God did indeed love me like I love my children, and yet so much greater? Was it because while I would love to protect my sons from hurt, I know that undoubtedly I won’t be able to at all times, while God could keep me from all harm, and yet…doesn’t?
While that may be true, what about the hurt that He knows I need to see to shape my life? Or what about the hurt that happens that He carries me through and uses for His glory? What about the fact that God sent His only son Jesus Christ in the ultimate act of love? How He sent His Son to die for me, so that I can have eternal life. Or what about the simple fact that at times I’m going to need faith, and that I may never understand some of His actions (or what I perceive to be lack of actions) in this lifetime?
Maybe the problem is that I had brought God’s love down to my human understanding of love. Sadly, a lot of times as a mere human, my love is conditional, circumstantial, and ever-changing. So when I see things in my life that are less-than-perfect, I think my assumption may automatically move to the “current level” of God’s love for me, bringing His perfection down into my imperfection.
When it all comes down, I need to remember that God’s love for me extends beyond circumstance. If God’s love merely came and went with the twists and turns of my life, then that would not be anything even close to the love that is described in my Bible. A love so strong that God did the unthinkable: He sent Jesus, who knew no sin, to this earth, to be tortured, beaten, and shamed – all for me! If that’s not love, I don’t know what is!
Questioning something isn’t wrong, but don’t let your questions keep you from answers. If you feel like God’s love has become something that comes and goes based on how good your life is, you’re missing the point. The point is that God’s love is all-consuming and all-knowing. He knows what’s He’s doing, even when we do not, and we can trust Him. When things start to appear as less than what I would like them to be, God’s love still stands. When I feel confused or angry because of something that’s happening, God’s love still stands.
It is God’s love that made it possible for you and I to have eternal life in Heaven, through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Next time you’re feeling shaky on just how much God loves you, think about that! Now that’s a love I can put my trust in!