1996-09-20 - God's Tender Love For Us
Sometimes we have false impressions of what God is really like. This can be due to bad teaching, bad modeling by our parents or reasons that have come from our own individual lives -- both internal and external. But too many of us think that God is not concerned about "little 'ole me" -- that "my" concerns are too trivial for Him, He is too busy with bigger things, etc. But let us not forget some important things about God.
First, God's attention span is limitless. He can handle both the "big" -- i.e., wars, earthquakes, famine, etc., and what some consider "the small" -- i.e., choosing a major in school, what is hurting one of His individual children, having a hard time making ends meet, or an argument with a friend or spouse needing to be resolved. Remember, He is a "detail man" by nature; He even knows how many hairs are on our heads:
Mat 10:30 (NIV) "And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered."
Also, He is not a God who wants to keep distant from us; in fact, He sent His Son to die and be raised to life for us, for the very reason of bringing us near.
Eph 2:13 (NIV) "But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ."
John 3:16 (KJV) "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life."
That's an everlasting life that starts down here as life with Him, and continues in Heaven as life with Him. He's here for us at all times. In all places. And in all situations. Because He loved us enough to lay down His life for us to give us His life.
In addition, God loves us so tenderly, that Jesus compares His love to that of a protective bird, for its fledglings:
Mat 23:37 (NIV) "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you were not willing."
God hurts when we hurt.
33 Jesus, therefore, when he saw her weeping, and the Jews who came with her weeping, did groan in the spirit, and troubled himself, and he said, Young, Robert, Young's Literal Translation, (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.) 1997.
Note that he literally "groaned" in empathetic pain with his friends.
Many of us are blessed with friends, and maybe even a couple of really close friends, who love us deeply. And this is a wonderful gift from God. But God loves us even more than that, and He wants an intimate relationship with us. When we pray, God wants us to call Him "Abba," which translates literally as "Daddy." It doesn't get much more tender than that. : )
Rom 8:15 (NIV) "For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by Him we cry, "Abba, Father."
So when you pray, remember that you are praying to someone Who really cares -- Someone Who wants to hear from us personally. Someone Who wants an intimate, father/child relationship with us.
Dear Father, help us truly grasp the fact that You love us so tenderly. Help us see how valuable we are to You. May it inspire in us worship and service, and consecration to You. In Jesus' name amen.
: ) Jan