Children of the living God

Lupin playing in the forest

Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.  John 1:12

How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!  1 John 3:1

As a father and grandfather I have a small inkling of greatness of God’s love for us. I have a special place in my heart for each of my children and grandchildren. To say it is intense is an gross understatement. In fact, I would prefer to be harmed than see any harm come to them. Each one is special, and no one else can take their place.

With God the Father it is similar, but on a far greater level of love.

In love for me Jesus came and died for me. Trusting in Him for my complete forgiveness, I am lifted to a special place—I sit at God’s table. It is there I enjoy all the blessings of being His child. I know He hears my prayers because I am the apple of His eye. How great is the love the Father has lavished on me!

I call on you, O God, for you will answer me;
give ear to me and hear my prayer.
Show the wonder of your great love,
you who save by your right hand
those who take refuge in you from their foes.
Keep me as the apple of your eye;
hide me in the shadow of your wings.  Psalm 17:6-8

I hope you have found your place at His table.

A Day of Rejoicing

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Standing before the throne.

When I awaken in the morning, it takes a while for my mind to awaken and get going. It is the same on a spiritual level. What I mean is God’s promises and love are still there, but it takes awhile to wake up to them and orient my spirit around my Lord.

My spiritual wake-up goes something like this:
My Lord God, You love me and will never leave me nor forsake me. (Hebrews 13:5, Romans 8:38-39)
Your love for me stretches out beyond my understanding and overcomes my every shortcoming. (Ephesians 3:18)
In that love You have redeemed me to be Your child (John 1:12)
I will not worry about my past nor carry it about like a ball and chain. When You redeemed me, You redeem my past too. You have given me a wonderful heritage in Jesus. (Psalm 61:5, Psalm 103:4)
I will not worry about today or tomorrow for You hold them in Your hand and will give me strength for all that lies ahead. (Psalm 139)
I rest in Your love for my family. I know You dearly love them. (Matthew 19:13-14)

One glorious day I will stand before God’s throne in the light of His love, praising Jesus for all He has done for me. What a day of rejoicing that will be!

Whoever is wise, let him heed these things
and consider the great love of the Lord. Psalm 107:43

How little we see—How little we love

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How great is God’s love for us.

Praise the Lord!
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!
His faithful love endures forever.
Who can list the glorious miracles of the Lord?
Who can ever praise him enough? Psalm 106:1-2 NLT

“Who can list the miracles of the LORD,” implies we are only seeing a small portion of what the LORD is doing. These miraculous happenings arise from God’s goodness and enduring love. His mighty love holds me even when I cannot see it. A simile for comparing our knowledge to what God is actually doing would be like looking out upon the trees and flowering fields, and all you think is that the lawn needs mowing. But the truth is if we saw life with clear eyes the wonder would blow us away and cause us to kneel in praise to God. That is why the Psalmist says—who can ever praise Him enough?

Fortunately, God’s goodness and love are poured out regardless of our level of understanding. But the ability to enjoy His gift depends on our hearts readiness to receive.

This is easiest to see with God’s love.

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. John 15:12 NIV

It is here we fall way short of loving in the measure we have been loved. Jesus calls it—little love.

Then he turned to the woman and said to Simon, “Look at this woman kneeling here. When I entered your home, you didn’t offer me water to wash the dust from my feet, but she has washed them with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You didn’t greet me with a kiss, but from the time I first came in, she has not stopped kissing my feet. You neglected the courtesy of olive oil to anoint my head, but she has anointed my feet with rare perfume.
I tell you, her sins—and they are many—have been forgiven, so she has shown me much love. But a person who is forgiven little shows only little love.” Luke 7:44-47 NLT

This “little love” not only chokes our love of God, but makes us apathetic to the pain of those around us. An example is racism. Most people feel they aren’t racist. But our feelings are not the measure here… it is have we loved our neighbor as God has loved us. Our “little love” has resulted in a trail of tears down through the generations, from the cruel days of slavery to the killing of George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbury.

If we truly saw the enormity of God’s love in Jesus, and the pain our indifference to others has caused, it would drive us to fall at the feet of Jesus pleading for forgiveness and stir afresh the desire to show His love to our neighbor. Lord, cure us of our “little love”… O who can ever love Him enough?