EarthBasic. Take care. Bless many.
Read |Romans 8: 31 - 39; Romans 5: 6 - 8|
In the 2009 film, “He’s Just Not That Into You”, we meet a cast of characters who struggle to interpret the actions of others on their quest to find love. The opening scene highlights the moment where one of the main characters comes to the false understanding that boys show their love through mean behaviors: she is playing on the playground, until she is pushed into the sand, where she withstands some severe name calling. Not long after, she comes face to face with her mother who lends her powers of interpretation, by saying that the mean actions were as a result of the boy’s like for her. She responds with a well earned quizzical face. Sometimes it can be hard to tell what people mean when they say and do things.
We know that God sent His only Begotten Son to earth, clothed in humanity, through the womb of a virgin. We know that this Son--Jesus Christ--was the one who was promised to come and take away the sins of the world and reconcile us to God. We know that Jesus Christ finished the work--shedding His blood (for the remission and forgiveness of our sins) on a cross between two thieves and being raised up on the third day (evidence that His sacrifice on our behalf was pleasing to God). We know. We know these facts. But, what of their meaning? What does God show us in making such a costly and elaborate provision for us to be forgiven of our sins and reunited with Him? He shows how greatly and perfectly we are loved.
Paul experienced this love. He experienced this love in spite of being the least of all the apostles, having persecuted the Church. To him was extended the gift of Jesus--His standing as righteous, holy and beloved of God. And with Paul's acceptance of this gift came a life grounded in the assurance of God's love. A life characterized by a godly boldness that can only come when we know we are loved unconditionally.
Understand my sisters that God took the initiative to come to earth. “The word became flesh and made his home among us” to show us how very special we are to him and how much he values our lives! (John 1:14, ESV). Jesus Christ does not love us as human beings do, he loves us unconditionally. When we had nothing to offer, He made the greatest offer--His life! (Romans 5:8).
We may be fooled that we do not deserve God’s love, because of something we have done that we are not proud of; our friends may say bad things about us; our children may be disappointed in us or give us a hard time and; we may have broken relationships one after the other and, feel as if something is wrong with us. Maybe we see all the brokenness and conclude that we are unworthy of love. But, when God looks at us He sees the one He with full knowledge made one with Jesus Christ-- He sees His beloved. Every day, take a look at the cross, without shying away from its gory details. Take a look at it and know it was done just for you. See in His stripes a love letter penned to you. He has deemed you worthy of loving--nothing can undo this.
Carolyn Sinclair McCalla is an educator, Christian education youth coordinator, author, singer, workshop and retreat leader, speaker and founder and president of EarthBasic. However, she is first and foremost a daughter of God, with a passion for encouraging women to embrace the fullness of God's love for them in Jesus Christ. You can connect with Carolyn on facebook, Instagram and here.