May 31, 2020

Four Ways God Loves You

Written by Boyd Bailey

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – May 31, 2020

Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life. Psalm 143:8

The Lord’s love is much, much more substantive than a shallow sentimental emotion or a feel good moment—His love reaches into the depths of our sorrows to comfort and to the heights of our happiness to celebrate our joy. The Lord’s love cares, corrals, chastens, comforts, challenges, calms and brings clarity out of confusion. Unconditional, unconventional and unyielding—rarely early, never late, but always timely is the application of His vast reservoir of everlasting love. 

What are some ways the Lord loves His children? We can start with these four Biblical images:

An Artist’s Love 

“He said, ‘Can I not do with you, Israel, as this potter does?’ declares the Lord. “Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand, Israel” (Jeremiah 18:6).

Like a Michaelangelo block of marble—yet to be finished, we are a masterpiece in the making in our Maker’s eyes. Rough around the edges, accented by beautiful glimpses of God’s glory, with unrecognizable, unhewn areas—we are a work in progress, but beautiful in our Beloved’s eyes. A sculpture of grace is not without suffering to smooth out sinful habits, relational tensions grow our trust in God to forgive, and answered prayer exposes the highlights of heaven’s imprints—all the while bringing clarity to our growing likeness of Christ. He is not finished with us—so by faith, we patiently submit to the Potter’s hand, as He molds us into His magnificent creation. Our heavenly Father’s love is the artistic license that allows pain to qualify us for transformation.

A Shepherd’s Love 

“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul” (Psalm 23:1-3).

Ever aware of where his sheep are located—close by, watching curiously from the edge of the herd or aimlessly wandering away—the sensitive shepherd seeks to lead his charges to what is best for them—though they are sometimes obstinate in their determination to do their own thing. In the same way our loving Shepherd looks out for us with His provision of rest, quiet contemplation of His majestic creation, and His life-giving soul refreshment. When we stray—He comes after us with loving discipline, when we wander toward the edge of disobedience—He reminds us of why love obeys, and when we remain close by—He rewards us with the joy and peace of His presence. The great love of our great Shepherd radically and relentlessly protects and provides for His sheep.

A Parent’s Love

“He said, “Surely they are my people, children who will be true to me”; and so he became their Savior” (Isaiah 63:8).

A parent’s love for their child includes training in the ways of the Lord and how to engage life with skill and zeal. Parental love is expressed in a plethora of ways: discipline, encouragement, teaching, modeling, church involvement, prayer, Bible study and service. A mom’s love nurtures compassion, while a dad’s love harnesses passion—both are critical to an emotionally healthy child. Compassion is the motivation to be generous in mercy, grace and giving—while feeling another’s pain with empathy and meeting their needs with helpful resources. Moms care deeply and freely. A loving dad helps channel a child’s passions into productive outcomes: anger into patient forgiveness, joy into gratitude, physical drive into serving others. Our heavenly Father loves us where we are, so He can grow us into a faithful follower of His son Jesus Christ.

A Spouse’s Love

“I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, My soul shall be joyful in my God; For He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments, And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels” (Isaiah 61:10, NKJV).

A husband and wife’s love is first submissive to their Lord and Savior Jesus Christ—whatever He says do, they do—whatever He says don’t do, they don’t do—whenever He says forgive, they forgive—whenever He says serve, they serve. The lasting fruit of marital love is: intimacy (emotional, spiritual, physical), joy, peace and fulfillment. Not without heartache, pain and disappointments, but all the while growing into oneness around their unity in Christ. Our bridegroom Jesus adorns us, His bride, with the jewels of His character, attracting yearning hearts to our hearts. The garments of our salvation are always in style causing others to look to the Lord for their hope and peace. Jesus loves us by giving His life to us—for us to love!

“Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work” (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17).

Prayer

Heavenly Father, I receive your love so I can love others freely and fully.


Application

Who needs me to love them today, with no strings attached?


Related Reading

Nehemiah 1:5; Psalm 25:7; 1 Timothy 1:14; Hebrews 12:6

Here is a helpful resource during these days of grief, sorrow and uncertainty: A Little Book of Comfort


Post/Tweet today

Relentless, radical and resourceful, our Lord’s love lingers with those who linger with Him. #WisdomHunters #love #truth #Jesus


Worship Resource

4 minute video: Voctave: 


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