For over half of my marriage, I based my wife’s love for me on what she did for me. Like, rather she respected me or not, or did she do the things I needed her to do to stroke my ego and make me feel like a man?
Think about the relationship that you’re currently in. Maybe it’s with your wife, husband, boyfriend, girlfriend, friend or even your son or daughter. Have you ever thought about what he or she does to keep you believing that they love you? It would probably be predicated on some sort of action towards you, right?
Since, for most of us, our love language is selfish, meaning we generally gage love by what a person does for us, God’s initial redemption plan allows us to be on the receiving end, first. And because His love is unearned and completely ridiculous to the natural mind, we have to, intentionally, create an atmosphere of faith to believe it everyday.
Our society doesn’t believe something so reckless! “You mean, no matter what I’ve done and what I will do, God still loves me, and He still blesses me? That doesn’t make sense!” You’re right, it doesn’t make sense. It makes Faith! Believing something so ridiculous takes Faith!
I realized that I didn’t know this kind of love for myself, once my infidelity was exposed in my marriage. Infidelity resulted from a legitimate need being fulfilled illegitimately. That need was for pure love, from God. I knew that if I was to ever love my wife the way that God loved me, I had to, first, receive His love for myself. So, in my childlike efforts to receive the love of my heavenly father, I put myself on a “receiving plan”.
I was tired of being unsuccessful in trying to prove my love to my wife, and I also felt like God wasn’t pleased with my efforts in trying to “do right” either. So I took all of my horrible stuff to God and I asked Him, “Father can you love me with all this awful stuff I’ve done? If you can, I’m gonna sit right here and just receive it!” I told Him, “I don’t know what your love feels like but, deep down inside, I believe that you do love me”. In that vulnerable and honest moment, God heard me; He revealed His love to me, and I have never been the same since.
1 John 4:10 NLT, says “This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.” This scripture implies that we have to receive God’s love, by way of what He’s done, through Jesus, before we can love Him or anyone else.
Now once you’ve accepted Gods love, you have to continue to believe in His unearned love for you. This is done through a consistent personal relationship with God. Isn’t it interesting that the bible describes eternal life by a relationship with God, and Jesus? John 17:3 AMPC, reminds us, “And this is eternal life: [it means] to know (to perceive, recognize, become acquainted with, and understand) You, the only true and real God, and [likewise] to know, Jesus [as the] Christ (the Anointed One, the Messiah), Whom You have sent.”
I think one of the best ways to develop a relationship with God is through prayer. But, you can’t just pray from a perspective of need, you have to pray from a perspective of what’s already been provided.
Here’s a question: When you pray, do you pray to God or do you pray with God? Praying to God is asking Him for things, but praying with God is agreeing with, and thanking Him for what He’s already done. I’ll give you an example. When I pray I say things like this: “Father, i thank you that you see me through the eyes of love. You have received me into your family, so whatever blessings you’ve given to Jesus, you have, also, given to me. I am your masterpiece, and to everyone around me, I am an expression of your love, mercy and grace. You are not mad at me and you never will be. Your thoughts and plans for me are good and because of that, I live an abundant life, daily, here on earth. You created me in your image to bring you joy, and I’m thankful that every time you think of me I bring a smile to your face! I receive your radical love for me every single day. Thank you daddy for loving me, in Jesus’ name, Amen”.
Thats how a child of the almighty God should pray! This is how you keep yourself in God’s love. This is how you stay in faith, and this is how you keep on believing in God’s love for you. Scripture says in Romans 12:2, “Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” His will is that you would receive His transforming love, and that it will propel you into a life of becoming like Jesus!
When you were accepted into the family of God by believing in Jesus, you became just like the very person you put your faith and trust in! 1 John 4:17 says, “By living in God, love has been brought to its full expression in us so that we may fearlessly face the day of judgment, because all that Jesus now is, so are we in this world.” I didn’t make that up. It’s in the bible. By receiving and believing, we’ve become just like Jesus!
Before Jesus’s death, this was His last prayer for all of us who believe. It was powerful then, and it is just as powerful now.
“And I ask not only for these disciples, but also for all those who will one day believe in me through their message. I pray for them all to be joined together as one even as you and I, Father, are joined together as one. I pray for them to become one with us so that the world will recognize that you sent me. For the very glory you have given to me I have given them so that they will be joined together as one and experience the same unity that we enjoy. You live fully in me and now I live fully in them so that they will experience perfect unity, and the world will be convinced that you have sent me, for they will see that you love each one of them with the same passionate love that you have for me.”
This was my personal journey to being changed into the image of my father. But the good news is, He’s not just my father, He’s yours to! So, I pray that you all will be changed by the most perfect Love that will ever exist… The Love of The Father.
I love you guys, but God loves you more. Receive, believe and become!
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