February 2023

So Loved

I enjoy wandering around in an antique store, sifting through the leftovers of days gone by and pondering the stories of people from other times and other cultures. Seeing and touching those things that were once chosen self-expressions or necessities of practical function is illuminating, maybe of them but assuredly of me. In the same way that reading good literature is self-revelatory, browsing through history by way of antique furniture and bric-a-brac highlights my own interests and enthusiasms as much as it does enlighten me of theirs. We are all, antecedents and descendants, woven into the same tapestry of humanity, and the few antique treasures I own serve to remind me of that continuity and connection.

In some measure I think I approach Scripture in the same way. Combing through the stories of people and cultures to see how God pursued them and how they responded to Him. Of course, in that regard, I am looking for Him more than I am looking for heroes and villains. It is, after all, His story. We are His story, His self-expression. Whether you believe it or not, we are truly His desire, and that is why He pursues us so relentlessly.

There is no greater love story, than the one playing out on planet Earth. “For God so loved the world….” (John 3:16) Eternity stepped down into time to bring finite (sinful) humans into breathtaking, glorious, infinite Love. As the generations come and go, His story continues to unfold, and our stories are changed forever when our names are written in the Book of Life. (Revelation 3:5)

Yes, He pursues us. He woos us. He has desire toward us. How can we not respond to that? His love demands a response from us. Dear one, how are you responding to His love today? Are you walking with Him and talking with Him? Have you revealed your heart to Him? He has certainly revealed His heart to you. Jesus, the radiance of God’s glory and the exact imprint of His nature (Hebrews 1:3), came so that we could know the Father and believe unto righteousness and become part of His family.

He doesn’t simply tell us what to do, He longs for us to tell Him how we think and feel and what we dream about. Yes, I tried to obey my earthly father, to behave in a way that was pleasing to him. I also crawled into his lap and cried when I was hurt, and I stood in the grass in my bare feet and laughed up at him when it tickled. I told him how sick I felt when I did or said something that hurt someone else. I shared my simple drawings and silly poems and knew that he enjoyed them, not because they were good but because they were mine. This is what God wants with us. Tell Him all of it. Hold His hand and know that you belong.

Until next week, beloved, give Him the highest place in your heart and in your mind.

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