Have you ever wondered how much someone really loves you? If only there was a universal scale, an S.I unit? Maybe… We all arbitrarily, consciously/unconsciously administer tests in a bid to answer the question “how much?” as it pertains to love and relationships. The yardstick or plumb line differs from person to person. If a certain person was to undergo these tests from say 5 or 10 different people, we’d have 5 or 10 different scores.
The big question is how much does God love us? God loves us, all of us. This is the truth, don’t struggle with it, even if you don’t believe it.
God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, Jesus to us to die for us John 3:16. The definition of ‘the world’ here is totally inclusive of all of us. God demonstrated His love unto us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.
Romans 5:8-9 TLB
But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners. And since by his blood he did all this for us as sinners, how much more will he do for us now that he has declared us not guilty? Now he will save us from all of God’s wrath to come.
I hope you do have goose bumps right now, because I do!
He loves us while we were still governed by the sinful nature; neither the sinful nature nor our sins could stop Him from loving us.
He has loved us with an everlasting love (love that lasts for ever); He is the same yesterday, today and forever. He detests sins, filth, He cannot behold iniquity but HE loves you. There’s nothing, absolutely nothing you or I can do to make Him love us more than He already does; nor is there anything to make Him love us any less than He already does.
We can’t do anything to His love, we can’t wish it away, and we cannot cause it to flee. We didn’t earn this love, neither can we ever pay back, but we can respond appropriately. The appropriate response won’t be to try to love back in same measure but to just accept the love HE has offered and let that love drive you to ‘do’.
Have you ever been in love with someone who loves you too much, so much you can’t seem to ever match or measure up or return the favour? Trying to match always ends up in frustration. Always easier and more peaceful to just enjoy the love being dished out to you and give in return what you can.
Let’s say a father has an only child and he decides to hand over all of His bank accounts to the disposal of that child, ALL of his accounts (I’m talking liquid, solid and gaseous cash, assets, bonds, anything valuable, ALL of it! Ok I think you get it now). Now, imagine you’re married to that same only child and everything he owns happens to be at your disposal, everything, ALL. Nothing is off limits, nothing. Just name it and kaboom! So you’re the wife of this only child who has all of his father’s wealth in his custody and at your full disposal, and the father totally approves of this. So, how awkward do you think it is going to be if you, the wife, goes over to the father to ask for some more money? Well, you can actually, but here’s what you’ll find, he can’t give you more, because He’s already given you all even before you tied the knots with his only Son. Rather than ask for more, put what your husband, his son has custody of into more use, access it more. I’d say same of the Father’s love to us, demonstrated through his only begotten son Jesus, to whom we have tied the knots when we believe. We (altogether) are his bride and Yes, we have access to all the father has given him. Of him, the Father said on more than one occasion, ‘this is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased’ Matt 3:17, 17:5; 2 Peter 1:17
So friends you see, it’s not that God doesn’t love you enough or doesn’t want to love you more; He CANNOT, because He already loves you with ALL he’s got! And this is regardless of your relationship status with Him – married, divorced, separated, complicated, civil partnership, friends with benefits – and any other type you’ve invented. Just accept that He loves you, even if you won’t love him back, that shouldn’t hurt, I guess. But imagine how peaceful you would really feel if loving Him back just a little was to be tried? Well, I can tell you I believe He loves me, I have no regrets accepting and I absolutely recommend that you do too! The peace that ensues is heart-warming and unbelievable! Ever heard of the phrase ‘too good to be true?’ This one fits that perfectly except for this fact, it’s true!
The Ten Commandments as delivered to Israel through Moses were summarised into two by Jesus. One was to love God, the second was to love your neighbour. We can for the purpose of this discourse summarise those two as one – LOVE. So we would be right to say God has commanded us to love. He hasn’t asked us to do what HE himself hasn’t already done. In fact, He asks less of us. He loves us unconditionally, even when not sure we would accept this love or return the favour. He died for all, the good, the bad and the ugly. There was yet nothing good about us when Christ died, but He was sure that the love he showed will draw men to Him. Truly, if there was ever anything that has today helped my firm resolve to follow God, it’s His love. It matters more to me than a thousand signs and wonders, His love endears me, and it is indeed ever present and never changing, constant in amount and intensity even through my changing range of emotions and responses.
Some seven or eight years back, I was in my 2nd or 3rd year in school and I was unimpressed with God and very disappointed. I just didn’t feel loved enough by Him, I decided to put God in the docks and won’t back down till I got answers. I made for the school chapel one evening after class, it was difficult to find a private spot in the arena always filled with people praying or singing or holding some meeting. I finally settled for an area close to the cemetery (others had avoided this area, it seemed perfect for me).
So I began my inquest, and like an interviewer-assisted questionnaire I began my interrogation. It felt like a monologue for a greater part of the whole time, I kept on ranting and fuming and expressing my frustration as much as I could. I even sought an instant sign, like a cloud, smoke, fire or even one of the tombstones would shake or open up. Nothing happened, nothing! Disappointment is an understatement to how I felt. Just then, several verses in the scriptures began to creep upon me and I was overwhelmed with a sense of ingratitude and guilt. My guilt wasn’t that I didn’t love Him back enough, but that I failed to see how much He already loves me. Swiftly, my interrogations turned to appreciation and acknowledgement of the proofs of His love to me. I left that place not feeling more loved but realising the unimaginable extent of God’s love to me.
Never hold any iota of doubt in your heart as it concerns God’s love to you, it is total and everlasting. If your sinful nature ± your sins did not hinder His love towards you before you believed or even if you are yet to believe, you can be rest assured that as a believer, nothing, absolutely nothing will make that love less. Becoming a believer will position you better to accepting this love rather than struggling with it. Freely embrace and enjoy a love that is too good to be true, but true.
Here’s a song that sums up these thoughts;
Wide, wide as the ocean, high as the heavens above,
Deep, deep as the deepest sea, is my Saviour’s love;
I though so unworthy, still I’m a child of His care,
For His word teaches me that His love reaches me everywhere!
Welcome to God’s everlasting and ‘never-increasing’ love!
Oluwatosin E. Fatade