You are loved
Psst, hey you. Yes, you.
I need to tell you something you might not know. It’s important, so heed my words and remember them well.
God loves you.
God. Loves. You.
Yes, you. No matter what you did. No matter what you’re going to do. No matter what you’re thinking or how good or bad you feel about yourself. Nothing can ever separate you from the love your Creator has for you.
But I’m not so sure everyone knows this. I’m not sure you know it. Look around you—all these people who shy away from church because they don’t think they’re up to par with other Christians. “I don’t fit in,” I’ve heard some people say. “If you only knew what I did Saturday night, or 10 years ago, or yesterday….”
God knows. He loves you anyway. And He doesn’t much care what you did so long as you stop that nonsense and start living for Him.
Or maybe you think God doesn’t love you because He didn’t answer your prayer the way you wanted. Think on this: perhaps He didn’t answer your prayer that way precisely because He loves you, and He has something better planned.
The apostle John’s first epistle is one of the most beautiful love letters found in Scripture; 1 John 4 is filled with gems like “love one another, for love comes from God” (7). “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through 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” (9-11). “This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit” (13). “God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them” (16). “We love because he first loved us” (19).
Our very capacity to love is proof-positive that God loves us. Otherwise, we—who are made in His image—wouldn’t even be able to love in the first place.
So stand a little straighter, my friend. Smile brighter. Take a deep breath and relax—you are precious to the Lord. You are His child. You are worthy.
And then pass that love on to others. For 1 John 4 finishes with this sweet nugget: “Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister.”
It’s a command, precious ones. God loves you. Live in love. Love each other.
“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”—Isaiah 41:10