What child doesn’t long to know her father? Abby admires Daddy. Daddy can do anything. He can fix anything. When he is around, everything is going to be alright. Where did Abby get this illogical trust? She was born with it. We were all born trusting.
Since God created us to know his love, what happened? We became afraid. We learned that sometimes accidents happen and our father can’t fix it. We learned that sometimes fathers leave. We learned that sometimes fathers fail. We came to the conclusion that God must be like some fathers—imperfect.
We drew the wrong conclusion. The Bible says…
- Psalm 27:10, New King James Version – “When my father and my mother forsake me, Then the Lord will take care of me.”
- Hebrews 13:5, The Living Bible “…For God has said, “I will never, never fail you nor forsake you.”
God loves us perfectly. We have no need to be afraid when God is our Father.
1 John 4:18, King James Version
“There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.”
Here are just five of the many ways God loves us:
- God goes out of his way. He leaves ninety-nine perfectly good sheep to find the little lost sheep who has strayed from His care. If you’re lost, God is looking for you right now. (Matthew 18:11-13)
- God gives way too much. God sent his only Son Jesus to die for our sins, so He would not have to punish us for our sins. All we have to do is accept Jesus’ sacrifice as a gift. (John 3:16-17)
- God does good things for no reason. He sends the sunshine and rain on the just and the unjust (Matthew 5:44-46). He forgives every prodigal son, who takes his blessings and wastes them on selfish living. Then, he throws a big party to celebrate when his child comes to their senses! (Luke 15:11-24)
- God trains us. God knows that good parents discipline their children. If He sees us going in the wrong direction, there will be correction. But, God’s discipline doesn’t condemn us—it leads to godly character. (Hebrews 12:5-11)
- God visits our world. God walked and talked with Adam in the Garden of Eden (Genesis 2:15-19). God shared his plans with Abraham and valued his opinion (Genesis 18:17-23). God wants to have a relationship with you too. He loves to hear about your day and your concerns. He wants you to be able to say what Jesus said… “Father I thank you because you always hear me…” (John 11:40-42)
We are most like God when we love others. It’s natural for children resemble their parents more and more as they mature. As we grow as Christians, so should our love for others.
1 John 4:7, Living Bible (TLB)
“Dear friends, let us practice loving each other, for love comes from God and those who are loving and kind show that they are the children of God, and that they are getting to know him better.”
Here are just five of the many ways we can love others:
- Go out of your way. Inconvenience yourself for someone. Take more time than you have to help out. Sometimes love is rearranging your schedule and canceling your plans.
- Give way too much. Reasonable gifts are nice. Sacrificial gifts send a message. The person knows the significance of the gift. This message lasts forever in their heart: “Oh-h-h-h you really love me”. Note: The sacrificial gift isn’t always financial.
- Do something good for no reason.
- Train others. If you see someone going in the wrong direction, say something. Your input could prevent heartache and danger. But when training, remember to add to someone’s life before you subtract. Give compliments before constructive criticism. Offer rewards for good behavior before removing privileges for misconduct.
- Visit their world. Spend some time with people doing the things they love. Talk to them about their interests. Your relationships will grow deeper when nurtured.
Today’s Life Key: Love each other the way God loves you. (John 13:34)