Your Awesome Love for Me
When we contemplate God—really, deeply contemplate Him—there is so much about Him to blow our minds. NASA recently released to the public their archives of photos, many taken by Hubble Telescope. While we may be able to see several hundred tiny points of light in the night sky, the Hubble shots are jaw-dropping glimpses of the wondrous beauty well beyond the naked eye. And these are only a miniscule fraction of what is out there in the infinite universe.
On the other end of the scale, the electron microscope opens us to the world of the tiny, where even there we can see the beauty and intricate design of the most minute elements that make up God’s created world.
All these examples of God’s splendor are added to the amazing things we can behold without scopes—the beautiful and varied plants, animals, and vistas that God has put before us to teach us about what an amazing, creative, powerful, wise God He is. For those who chose to see, there are ample reasons to be awed by God and what He has done.
But such knowledge will only take us so far. Sure, we can be stunned speechless by the complexity, vastness, and beauty of God’s creation, but God is not satisfied to have us be mere admirers of His works—like delighted attendees of some spectacular art show. He wants us to have a more personal response to His works, therefore the glory of what He has done goes well beyond what the impersonal observer has experienced. God does awesome, deeply personal things like going before us in our life’s trials, fighting every battle on our behalf, sticking with us through all our troubles.
All of that would be awesome enough if another human being would stick by us in difficult times, but these acts of love, compassion, and protection are being shown to us by the same One who created all the aforementioned marvels! Does it ever grab you that the One who created all these things, in the vastness of the universe, would be interested in your life? In you, personally? It is like David said in Psalm 8, “When I consider the work of Your fingers, the moon and stars which You have set in place, what is man the You are mindful of him?” Can you answer that question? And can you answer the question, “Why, out of all the people in this world, is God interested in drawing me to be His beloved child?”
Those questions defy answers. But it gets even more wonderful than that! Because not only did this phenomenal Being choose to love us, He chose to demonstrate that love by dying for us; willingly suffering to ensure we would spend eternity with Him. Does that make any sense whatsoever? It is beyond comprehension, yet we tend to treat it too lightly—or, dare I say, with indifference? Does this wonder still move our hearts?
Perhaps it is because this is so incomprehensible that we set it aside so our little brains don’t explode in the effort to explore the thoughts. Maybe it is like the baby who laps up the applesauce from the spoon his mother offers. He only knows that it is good, but comprehends nothing of the plant from which it comes, or the process that brought it to the current form, nor the hard work (even sacrifice) of his parents to supply his needs—needs beyond which he is even aware. He only knows, from his limited perspective, that what is given him is SO GOOD, and that this person who is supplying it to him is the one he looks to for an abundance of good things. Perhaps that is similar to what we experience with God.
But even with our own limited capacity, we can open our minds and hearts more to understand and appreciate the awesome love of God for us. We can grow to move from grateful acceptance of the gifts to adoration for the Giver. We can determine to no longer take for granted what we have been given—His sacrificial love, gracious salvation, and abiding presence in our lives. We can take to heart the many precious promises and statements of faithful love of God for us which saturates the scriptures.
Jesus tells the church in Revelation that they have lost their first love for Him, and to regain it, they must do what they did in the beginning. Jerry Bridges encourages us to “preach the gospel to ourselves every day.” That means we need to remind ourselves of the elementary truths—truths from what was probably the first Bible verse most of us memorized: For God so loved the world, He gave His only begotten Son… We need to remind ourselves of the overwhelming love of God, to us who do not deserve it. We need to refresh our wonder that He was willing to suffer and die to bring us close to Him. We need to pray that God will give us the supernatural ability to grasp a love that is beyond comprehension—that is higher and wider and longer and deeper than anything we can imagine!
If we persist in this, I believe we will experience this awesome love in more personal and joyous ways. It will transform our lives, revitalize our worship, and make people thirsty for whatever it is we have that makes Him shine out of our spirits.
by Sheri Cook, Director of Special Ministries