Monday Musings: The Love of God

God is love.  ~I John 4:8

I don’t remember when I learned this verse.

It’s been part of my understanding of Who God is and how He works in the world as far back as my mind can travel.

But I freely admit:  He may BE love, but I don’t always FEEL loved.

When I compare verses like Matthew 7:10-12 to my own experience, it’s hard to wrap my heart around the disconnect between what I have been given and what I would give my own children.

 If any of you were asked by his son for bread would you be likely to give him a stone, or if he asks for a fish would you give him a snake? If you then, for all your evil, quite naturally give good things to your children, how much more likely is it that your Heavenly Father will give good things to those who ask him?

Matthew 7:10-12 PHLLIPS

It did not, and does not, FEEL like the act of a loving Father to have allowed the death of my son.

But I am more than my feelings.

And while it is not sin to feel abandoned, or hurt, or even angry-I must be careful not to let my feelings dictate my response to the truth revealed in God’s Word.  

faith is truth not feelings

I acknowledge my emotions but I will not be ruled by them.

I am transformed by the renewing of my mind-I am transformed as I fill my mind with God’s truth.

So I lean in:

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love,  may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, 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

.Ephesians 3:16-19 NIV

nothing can separate1

And I hold on:

The Eternal is compassionate and merciful. When we cross all the lines, He is patient with us. When we struggle against Him, He lovingly stays with us—changing, convicting, prodding;

Psalm 103:8 VOICE

Even though I don’t feel it, I sing this truth to my broken heart:

Since we have been acquitted and made right through faith, we are able to experience true and lasting peace with God through our Lord Jesus, the Anointed One, the Liberating King.  Jesus leads us into a place of radical grace where we are able to celebrate the hope of experiencing God’s gloryAnd that’s not all. We also celebrate in seasons of suffering because we know that when we suffer we develop endurance, which shapes our characters. When our characters are refined, we learn what it means to hope and anticipate God’s goodness. And hope will never fail to satisfy our deepest need because the Holy Spirit that was given to us has flooded our hearts with God’s love.

Romans 3:3-5 VOICE

john 3 16

Because there will be a  day when my faith is sight, my feelings and my knowledge will agree, but until then I try to let God’s truth transform me so that I can “let God re-mould [my] mind from within, so that [I] may prove in practice that the plan of God for [me] is good, meets all his demands and moves towards the goal of true maturity.” (Romans 112:2b PHILLIPS)

 

 

Author: Melanie

I am a shepherd, wife and mother of four amazing children, three that walk the earth with me and one who lives with Jesus. This is a record of my grief journey and a look into the life I didn't choose. If you are interested in joining a community of bereaved parents leaning on the promises of God in Christ, please like the public Facebook page, "Heartache and Hope: Life After Losing a Child" and join the conversation.

12 thoughts on “Monday Musings: The Love of God”

  1. Amen Hallelujah Praise the Lord.
    Wow. Friend I can only one thing Peace be with you. May God be with you always and forever and ever may you be loved like you are holding on to. Amen God indeed is love even when we don’t feel Him. Amen

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  2. Yesterday, driving to church, I was praying for my youngest son who was away for the weekend. It’s still so hard to not include my oldest in my prayers and then, when I remember I don’t have to pray for him anymore, not to wonder why I even pray for God’s protection over my living son since He “didn’t protect” his brother. But yesterday, it was as if I realized for the first time that all my prayers for safety & good for my Evan had been answered in one fell swoop. Certainly not how I had hoped and dreamed but I believe he is in heaven where he is now safe from all harm & evil and happier than he could have ever been here on this wretched earth. I am going to try to find as much peace & comfort in that thought as I can and keep praying and trusting that God hears and answers, though it’s much easier said than done.

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    1. What a blessing to make that connection-yes, not as we would want it to be-but our children safe with Jesus are safe from ALL harm and hurt and heartache. One day we will join them. May the Lord continue to give you strength for each day and uphold your heart with His hope.

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    2. Stacy , I am right with you. My prayers of petition have changed from what ,I want to ‘God’s will Entirely. ‘. At first I said this angrily — ‘he didn’t listen to my prayers of healing for my son’ so why would I ask him to do anything else. I know God can do anything in any situation…: it I don’t know and have NO. Control l over any situations n. I am learning –slowly (it has been 2 1/2 years since my son die Died) –1to trust Him and allow Him to work in my family.

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  3. I believe that God is wholly good and I don’t need to expand my notion of good to include things that are obviously bad, like children suffering and dying of cancer. I can trust that Jesus knew what he was talking about when he attributed physical affliction to the work of the devil (Luke 13:16) and reversed it every time he encountered it. Bad things happen because we live in a battleground. Every war has casualties, even when we already know the final outcome. Just because something happens does not mean it is God’s will OR good. Bad things happen when people and demons have free will and we have our current prince of the power of the air. If we had to expand our understanding of “good” to include everything that happens on planet earth, we would be calling all sorts of evil “good”. God is not controlling everything that happens. The apostle John tells us the the whole world is under the powere of the evil one. Thankfully, the battle will one day be over and all things will be made new.

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    1. Jenny, I understand your perspective. I agree that the evil one is at work in the world and that demons and humans have free will. I also believe in the sovereignty of God-I don’t think He is limited by the devil’s current power on earth. So I guess I’m still at the place where I am not comfortable attibuting all “bad” things as somehow being outside God’s control. I don’t know how to balance the two attributes of a Holy and Perfect God-I doubt my limited human mind can do that-but I am willing to continue to believe both and hold them in tension. Only considering the story of Job-God gave permission for the devil to attack Job and apparently the devil had to ask for it. Yes, the bad things were the result of the devil’s actions but God allowed it. Thank you for sharing your understanding of Scripture-we see through a glass darkly but one day we will see everything clearly.

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  4. Yes. This fight between my emotions and my head and is part of the pain. Does the end just the means? What kind of Father would allow that to his Son for any reason? When I prayed for my son’s safety and renewal, spiritual, physical, emotional, I was not praying for God to take him away from me. I struggle with my poor acting abilities on those days that I am really down, especially Sundays at church.

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    1. It is such a struggle. For me, part of the struggle is amplified because believers who have not had this pain can sweep our questions under the rug-their experience leads them to understand God’s goodness in ways that are congruent with what they think of as “good”. We have been forced to expand our notion of “good” or to deny that God IS good. I choose to believe He is good but that I don’t comprehend goodness in the fullest sense.

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