Tuesday, February 8, 2011

TTT–Perfect Love


February brings us many reminders of love. Valentine’s Day cards, red boxes of chocolate, a dozen roses, and a whole lot more. But is that really what love is about? Material things to give us pleasure? Or is it something deeper and much more meaningful? Love isn’t simply a feeling – it’s an action. Love backs itself up with honesty, loyalty, and forgiveness and doesn’t give in to fleeting feelings. Love is not proud and builds others up, because true love is something that lasts forever. God IS LOVE. He doesn’t love the way the world loves – His love is perfect and unfailing. God loves you because He loves you. It’s that simple, but it’s completely real.

Many people see themselves as unworthy of love because of the things they have done in the past. Many people believe that perfect love doesn’t exist, and that trusting a God who offers it is a risk they don’t want to take. Many people undermine God’s love and set it in a box, only opening it when they need that little reminder. But everyone needs God’s love. No excuses. No nothing. Everyone – and that means you.

When God created people, He did so because He wanted to share His love and allow them to have the joy in sharing it with others. His love was a gift to all men – but as we know, God’s love was put aside for fleshly desires and man’s focus was turned away from his Creator. But God’s love didn’t just go away – it always remained and was free for anyone who wanted it, just as it still is today. God’s love is right there for the taking, you just have to be willing to reach out and receive it.

What I wanted to write about today was God’s Redeeming Love. His forgiveness and faithfulness toward us continues to astound me, and it just keeps confirming how amazing His love truly is. An incredible example of His redeeming love and forgiveness is found in the book of Hosea.

Meet the prophet Hosea; kind, handsome, and very loyal. He loved God and was probably a well known person in the community. He was unmarried and that’s about all we know about him in the beginning. But, God had a plan for Hosea during the time of Israel’s disobedience to Him and told Hosea to take Gomer, a current prostitute, to be his wife. Gomer didn’t deserve Hosea as a husband and Hosea had no need to marry such a woman as her. But, even though the situation looked confusing, Hosea married Gomer and loved her wholly and truly. He showered her with kindness and bought her fine things. In doing so, Hosea showed Gomer God’s love and refused to let her dark past get between the love he wanted her to understand and accept. Things may have looked good for a little while; we don’t know, the Bible doesn’t say. But, after a while, Gomer ran away from Hosea and went back into prostitution.

Can you imagine what Hosea must have been feeling? What would you have done? Would you have gone back? Well, Hosea did. Hosea chased after his wife, brought her back home, and continued to love her. CONTINUED TO LOVE HER. Do you see the picture that is being painted here? Hosea continued to love Gomer even though she kept running back to her sin. He ran after her and brought her back, not because he felt he had to, but because he wanted to. Hosea truly loved Gomer and continued to show himself faithful even when she didn’t.

I believe God allowed this all to happen to Hosea so that we could look back and understand how amazing His love is for us. God brought us out of the muddy pit and showered us with perfect love. He made us completely new and whole again. He was faithful and filled up that void inside of us that longed for Him. HE LOVED US. And what did we do? We ran back to our sin and fell into that muddy pit again. We desired something we thought could give us a ‘good feeling’, but in the end were left empty and hurt. God didn’t just leave us there in our misery, but chased after us because of His love. He brought us back to Him and washed away the mud. He showered us with perfect love once again and promised to never leave us.

Just like Gomer, we don’t deserve God’s love. Our sin can’t be with God. God didn’t have to continue to be faithful to us – He didn’t have to be our Rescuer. But GOD IS LOVE and thank goodness for that. God created us to love us because it’s His nature. His Redeeming Love brings you back and makes you whole again. His love will NEVER EVER fail you even when the whole world turns against you. His love endures forever – so cling to it and you will gain His strength.

Learn to love like God loves this Valentine’s Day. Understand the true meaning of His faithfulness and thank Him today for the gift of everlasting love.

Thank you Lexi for sharing God’s love with us today!


PS Tomorrow is a give-away that our children love! 

PSS I want to share this link with you – a new photo friend asked several photographers to share some of our favorite photos with her for a video montage she was making to go with the song LIVE…go here to be blessed by it.

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