God Passionately Loves You
Posted on 31 January 2015. Tags: confidence, faith, intimacy, joy, love, resource, wisdom
God is Infinite in All His Characteristics
God’s passionate love for each of us is a message I would like every believer to know deep in their hearts. He is not casually in love with, or warm-hearted about you; God loves you with an unfailing love. He is all-powerful. He is all-knowing. He is always present. Whatever He is, He is to the fullness. Therefore to say God is love means He is love-defined in all that He does.
We are the ones who limit God due to our preconceived ideas about what God should be like. We feel it somewhat beneath Him to be infatuated with us. I think we feel it makes Him appear weak and vulnerable, but the Bible doesn’t try to hide God’s love for us. In fact, God is very extravagant in His love.
Marriage is to Reveal God’s Love for Us
People have had a hard time trying to make sense of Song of Solomon. Some claim it is just a story of marital love. Others try to say its an allegory about God’s love for us. If it’s the later, then that is the only example we need of the passionate love God has for us. If you tend to believe the interpretation of Song of Solomon lies in the former, then let me remind you of Paul’s words: “‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh.’ This is a profound mystery—but I am talking about Christ and the church” (Ephesians 5:31-32).
The intimacy that we get to enjoy in marriage is a replica of the intimacy God is offering to us. We love because God first loved us (1 John 4:19). We only know how to love because God poured out His love on us. When we see love in action, we see God at work (1 John 4:12). To remove God’s passion from His love for us, is to say a passionate love is sinful (somehow leading us away from God).
Our Father’s Passionate Love for His Children
I understand it may be hard to think of God like one would think of their spouse. There is an equality in the relationship that some people will have a hard time ever believing. If God wasn’t the One initiating this type of relationship, it would be impossible for us to even hope for it. However, let’s try to think of Him as our Father.
We may have not had the best growing up experience, but we can at least comprehend of a father being intimately involved with his children. He can understand how he would want to spend time with them, play with them, and constantly desiring good things for them. If we know how to be a good father, how much more will our Heavenly Father be like this towards us (Matthew 7:11)?
Bible Verses on God’s Passionate Love for You
Now I know we often read the Bible with the lens of what we believe about God, ourselves and the world. That is why I just spent some time laying the framework for belief in God’s passionate love. With that in mind read these passages looking at the extravagance of God’s love for you. May they encourage you and draw you into the passionate love of your God.
- (1 John 3:1a) See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!
- (1 John 4:10-12) This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.
- (1 John 4:19-21) We love because he first loved us. If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And he has given us this command: Whoever loves God must also love his brother.
- (Romans 5:8) But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
- (Romans 8:38-39) For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
- (Ephesians 3:17-19) And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge-that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
- (Psalm 48:9) Within your temple, O God, we meditate on your unfailing love.
- (Psalm 86:5) You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you.
- (Psalm 117:2) For great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the LORD endures forever.
- (Psalm 145:8-9) The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.
- (Hosea 14:4) I will heal their waywardness and love them freely, for my anger has turned away from them.
- (Jeremiah 31:3) The LORD appeared to us in the past, saying: “I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with loving-kindness.”
- (John 14:21b) He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love him and show myself to him.
- (John 15:9) As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.
- (Zephaniah 3:17) He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.
- (Isaiah 62:5b) As a bridegroom rejoices over his bride, so will your God rejoice over you.
- (Isaiah 40:11) He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.
- (Isaiah 43:4a) Since you are precious and honored in my sight, and because I love you.
Angela is a busy girl. Even as I was tucking her in one night, she is on her bed here and there. She didn’t want to go to sleep (just as any child doesn’t want to have to stop playing to go to sleep). As I was tucking Angela in one night, making sure that no mosquitos would enter in her net, she was busily playing with her one-legged doll telling me not to tuck in the net as she planned on getting out soon. I smiled. I am not sure what she was planning to get out and do. Probably continue to play with her doll.
“Let’s pray together. What are some things we can thank God for?”
After saying my name and a few other Aunties names, I asked Angela if she would like to pray for her family.
We had just coloured pictures of our homes and families the day before and she had told me about her mom and dad and step-brother. Angela’s dad is American, and until recently, He didn’t know about her. He hopes to get custody of her and take her to the USA.
I started and prayed for my family.
Then Angela prayed:
“Father Lord God Almighty I want to thank you for this day. I want to pray for my Da-Dee, Father Lord God Almighty. I thank you that he wants to take me, and I pray that Father Lord Almighty that He will be good. And Father Lord God Almighty I pray for my Mum-Mee that she will say yes and that she will be good and for baby Chris that he will be good. Amen”
I smiled at such a beautiful prayer from Angela. I loved the Father Lord God Almighty’s she included too. She loves her Lord.
Angela went to bed and I headed back to our house for the night.
The next day Angelas mother and baby brother Chris came to Amecet to visit Angela. She was so excited! Her mom also brought her an apple (her favourite—that’s how I gave her the nickname Apple) and some ice cream. Angela sat with her mom for a while and then showed her brother the playground at Amecet. She was excited to show her mom that she had learned to ride a bike too! Her mom didn’t stay long, but even the short visit made Angela’s whole day.
Later on I said to Angela, “Remember when we prayed yesterday?”
“Yes” “Who did we pray for?”
She responded, “Our families”
“And who showed up today and visited?”
Angela’s whole face lit up, “My Mum-Mee and Chris!”
The whole rest of the day if you asked Angela what God did for her, she would tell people of our prayer time and how her mom visited.
I am thankful to God that he hears all our prayers. Sometimes he even spoils us with His extravagent love. I am thankful that God is a Father to all.
And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to the prayers. – Acts 2:42 (ESV)
I don’t travel away from my family too often, but when I do I love to call home.
Many times it’s because I’m speaking somewhere and when that’s the case, I’m normally very nervous and wanting to hear the familiar voices of those I love.
Our conversations aren’t particularly unique… they’re pretty normal actually. Many times they involve the day’s activities, requests to have a friend come over to play, an exorbitant amount of details for a hurt booboo, and a play by play of who did what to the other kid. But nonetheless, it’s who is on the other end of the line that eases the ache of being away from home. It’s being able to hear their voices and them hear mine. The heart connection that occurs is what matters.
It’s kind of like that with God.
We are all pilgrims living in a distant land, and this land confirms that it is not our home as our hearts ache with pain, regrets, and disappointments. It’s always good to call home to the One who truly understands and loves us.
There’s something about calling home that does our hearts good.
But don’t be mistaken. Our prayers don’t have to be fancy, nor do they have to only be spoken when high level decisions need to be made. The greatest truth about prayer is that our prayers don’t have to be impressive, articulate or refined. In fact, it’s okay for them to be awkward, simple, or even short in length.
The great news is that the power of prayer doesn’t rest in the one who is saying it, but rather in the One who hears it.
Release yourself from the burden of cleaning your prayers and yourself up before you call “home.” God always loves to hear your voice.
We are told in Philippians 4:6 to not worry about anything but instead to PRAY about EVERYTHING! Everything… that means all of your important decisions and your not-so-important ones too. They all matter to God.
Paul reminds us in Colossians 4:2 that we are to devote ourselves to prayer…
And we see in Acts 2:42 that is exactly what the early church did. They were a people who were DEVOTED!
And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. – Acts 2:42 (ESV)
They were men and women who were devoted to learning more about God – a people who were devoted to each other, people who spent time together, and people who PRAYED together!
And what was the result?
God moved powerfully through them, and added to their numbers daily!!!
In a time when we keep hearing how church attendance is in decline, maybe we should go back to the basics of our faith:
Time in the Word.
Living in community.
Having friends over to our homes for dinner.
Living out our faith in the everyday moments of our lives and allowing God to move powerfully through us.
My Bible commentary states this: “A healthy Christian community attracts people to Christ. These early Christians had a zeal for worship and brotherly love that was contagious to those around them.”
As we embark on this 8 week journey, learning more and more about prayer and growing in our prayer life, make no mistake… you are entering a spiritual battle.
Don’t enter with fear but rather with confidence that our Savior, Jesus Christ, has already won this war. Nonetheless, we, like the early Christians before us, need to be devoted to prayer.
Don’t be surprised by the many different ways Satan will try to stop you from continuing in this study. The last thing he wants you doing is developing your spiritual prayer muscles.
I can attest to the fact that preparing for this current study has been one of the most difficult for me personally. This past Christmas while we were on our “break” I worked behind the scenes many days and evenings until the early morning hours. I fought against feelings of depression and unappreciation and old wounds surfaced. It was almost as though I was in my own prayer training ground as we approached this study. There were many nights when I cried myself to sleep. I struggled with getting sick, my kids getting sick, and then the massive tornado hit Rowlett, Texas… the town right next to me. My own husband – as well as my brother – were involved in helping the victims of this horrific event. My Christmas break was anything but normal… or relaxing.
And I share this with you all to say, take heart sweet friend! Though these battles we fight are not easy, we are promised through God’s Word that we do not fight them alone.
God is with us.
My prayer for us this study is that we will emerge from studying God’s Word these next 8 weeks as powerful prayer warriors and our lives and the lives of our families will forever be changed!
Like the early Christians before us, we will devote ourselves to prayer.
Praying over our marriages, our children and ourselves… because if we don’t, who will?
And may I make one suggestion? Pray specific prayers.
Don’t pray broad prayers where it’s hard to see God at work in your life. Pray prayers where you can SEE God moving.
And as you pray for God’s power to work in different areas of your life, remember the TRUTH of His Word: GREATER is HE who is in me than he who is in the world!!!
Sweet sisters, together let’s be devoted to prayer and fight back on our knees. May God do a mighty work through us, and may this world never be the same!
For His Glory!!!
Talk with us: What one area of your life are you going to begin praying specific prayers and fight for these next 8 weeks?
Love God Greatly!
Week 1 Challenge: Find a spot in your home where you are going to meet with God every day to devote yourself to reading God’s Word and praying. Place your Bible there, your journal, and anything else you need… pens, highlighters, etc. Let’s be intentional as we engage in battle!
Hey, take a picture of your spot and share it with us this week using the hashtag: #LoveGodGreatly…we can’t wait to see it!!!
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