Monday, February 13, 2012

What manner of love!

“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God... (1 Jn. 3:1, ESV)
This is not specifically an adoption-related blog post, but with Valentine's Day looming, I wanted to spend a moment and share some of the many verses about the love of God. He is the perfect Abba, the One that fulfills everything I need.
...You have been raised to new life in Christ... for you died when Christ died, and your real life is hidden with Christ in God.” (Col. 3:1,3, NLT) We are safe! Who we really are is wrapped up in Christ Himself, protected by God.
“For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, “Abba! Father!”” (Rom.8:15, NASB) We are not to fear. Because of Christ, we have a standing as a beloved child before a loving Daddy!
“Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy, to the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.” (Jude 24-25, KJV) The words in that first phrase literally mean that God, as a result of His own ability and resources, is able to guard us so that we stand firm. How comforting to know that He is there!
“For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:7-8 ESV) Indeed, the price God paid for our adoption was His Son's blood. When we didn't even know Him, He showed love. This love is as unchanging as God Himself, and extends far beyond our initial salvation from Hell.
“Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words...He maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God” (Romans 8:26, ESV, KJV) God recognizes that we are weak and does not berate us for it, but sends us His own Spirit to help when we can't get the right words to come out!
“...[Christ] is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.” (Heb. 7:25, ESV) Jesus is always there to mediate between us and the Father. He is there to take up our case and to make peace. We don't have to stand alone!
“For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear Him. As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. Just as a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear Him. For He Himself knows our frame; He is mindful that we are but dust.” (Ps. 103:11-14, NASB) God's love for His children is beyond our scope for understanding. He takes our sins away and shows compassion towards us. He knows we're frail, and is not repulsed or annoyed by our humanity.
“But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.” (Psalm 86:15, ESV) We have a Father that is consistently patient and loving towards us. He is not moody or inconsistent! He knows our thoughts, never misunderstands us, and extends forgiveness and restores broken relationships.
“The temptations in your life are no different from what others experience. And God is faithful. He will not allow the temptation to be more than you can stand. When you are tempted, He will show you a way out so that you can endure.” (1 Corinthians 10:13 NLT) God does not leave us alone to stumble through life. He is attentive and aware of our every step.
“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.” (Jn. 14:27, NASB) We have a loving Abba who exudes peace, not tension, fear, or insecurity.
This Valentine's Day, praise God for His love for you!