Tag Archives: Loved

No Greater Love | Day 1

Today is the first of a three day series of what I believe to be the greatest love story ever told…Let’s begin with purpose.

“The purpose of life is not to be happy. It is to be useful, to be honorable, to be compassionate, to have it make some difference that you have lived and lived well.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

Purpose? Yes, purpose.

Take a breath. Grab a cup of coffee. Snuggle under your favorite blanket and ponder my thoughts. Know, my friend, that as I write this, I’m wishing we could be sitting in a coffee shop sharing a conversation face to face or in the comfort of my living room, enjoying the presence of wisdom and wonder together. But since this computer is what we have, let’s embrace it. Hello friend…there is purpose!

From the moment our hearts pump their first drop of blood, there is purpose.

In an instant, that purpose is life.

Some never take their first breath, but rest assured, they lived. For however short a time their heart beat inside their mothers womb, they were known. They were loved. They lived.

“When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” Psalm 139:16

Known. Loved. Life.

Each and every heart that beats has been known, loved, and lived.

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How can that be?

We live in a horribly broken world with devastation surrounding us daily. A quick glimpse of the news is enough to make any stomach churn. How can every single heartbeat be known, loved and live? Babies die every day. Children are abandoned. Mother’s and Father’s forsake, abuse, murder. Lives are tossed aside as if they have no meaning, no point, no purpose…like garbage or waste.

“Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Does he not leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.” Luke 15:4-7

But…each and every single heart that beats has been known, loved, and lived…by The One who created him, who knit him together in his mother’s womb. Not one went unloved.

“This is the will of Him who sent me, that I shall not lose none of all that He has given me, but raise them up at the last day. For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in Him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.” John 6:39-40

Not one. Not one life that chooses to believe. Not one heartbeat, whether is beats a thousand times for a thousand years or only once. Not one life that chooses Him will be lost. Can you believe that, my friend?

There is purpose.
In every beat of the heart. In yours, in mine, in the tiniest, most fragile heart.
There is purpose.

In the beginning, God created. None of us can claim that. We can’t take any credit for the trees, the stars, the clouds, the mountains, the ocean, and so on. We can’t even claim the own children who grow in our womb. Sure, we can do things to grow life, to sustain things but there is only One who can claim each and every creation.

He created the earth and from the dust of the earth, He breathed life into man…into us. And to the dust, our bodies will return. Each and every one of us. No one thats heart has beat escapes life and no one whose heart has stopped escapes death…in the physical sense. But every single heart that beats, lives…and every single life that lives has purpose.

That purpose can’t be explained by evolution, science, or even by our faith. We can’t prove our purpose beyond sharing our feelings and thoughts about the subject.

But there is purpose.

Otherwise, we simply wouldn’t exist. Without a reason, there isn’t a need.

Like…in the beginning, God created everything. He spoke the world into existence. And man, and woman; He breathed life into them. We can’t truly understand any of that because it’s simply beyond our ability to understand.

But purpose…Adam and Eve get blamed for all the worlds problems but Christians agree that God makes no mistakes. So, when we blame Adam and Eve for their bad choices, poor judgment, or lack of obedience, aren’t we essentially saying God made a mistake? That He created everything perfect and yet somehow, everything ended up imperfect? That sin was an accident, an afterthought, a big oops?

My point is this…even in sin, there is purpose. God allowed sin for a reason. I don’t have all the answers, and thankfully, I never will…because honestly, I don’t think I could handle that. And that’s probably exactly why we don’t have all the answers…because God knows, we’re confused enough as it is!

God does not make mistakes. He can’t. He is perfect and we are His perfect creations…sin and all.

Sin? Sin is bad…right? So why would God allow sin in a perfect world?

Without sin, we would have no true need for Him. Without sin, we would have no glory to reveal, no savior for saving. The point, the purpose, is to reveal God’s glory, to shine the light of Christ, to know Him, and to make Him known. Without sin, there would be no need for Him…and the purpose is to know Him, to need Him, to love Him, and to be loved by Him. Without sin, the world in which we live would already be perfect and we would miss out on all the glory and goodness He provides. We would know no different.

With sin, the ability to discern a difference between light and darkness, was born. With sin, came an understanding that we are not God but we are God’s, we need Him. With sin, came a desperate need for something more, something beyond our own explanations and comprehension. With sin, came pain and suffering, but with pain and suffering comes healing.

“God has saved us and called us to a holy life — not because of anything we have done but because of His own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel.” 2 Timothy 1:9-10

Does that mean sin is good or okay? No. It just means there is purpose in it, even when we can’t understand.

“And we know that in all things God works for for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to His purpose.” Romans 8:28

What then, would be the purpose in sin? Sin separates us from God. Sin destroys life. Because of sin, physical death exists and because of sin, grace exists. Because of sin, we are weak. Because of sin, we are broken. Because of sin, we need. Because of sin, we need a savior. Because of sin, we need healing. Without sin, there would be no suffering and without suffering, we would need no savior. Because God allowed sin, we get to see the goodness of His glory in the presence of our Savior, His Son, Jesus Christ. Because of sin we need Him, and because He loves us, He gave us His Son…to give us life.

“He was pierced for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His wounds, we are healed.” Isaiah 53:8

“After the suffering of his soul, he will see the light of life and be satisfied.” Isaiah 53:11

You see, it is through our suffering that we have the ability to really see Him, how greatly we need Him, and to fully recognize the emptiness we have without Him. It is through that sin which gave us over to death, that He has overcome to give us life. There is purpose…to see His might and glory…to create in us a need for Him and to provide healing.

“But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8

And on that note, ponder a while on healing. I’ll be back tomorrow to pick up where I left off here. I hope you’ll join me again as we explore together this great love story. Click here for Day 2.

“Our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us.” Romans 8:18

 

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Amazing…

Amazing

This morning, I share with you a tender moment in my day.

A sweet friend and book lover recommended a book to me just a few short days ago.  I downloaded it and thought little more about it until this morning when I found myself wide awake, much too early.

As I held my phone in my hand, staring at the words written by Holley Gerth in her book, You’re Already Amazing, Satan was already at work.  It took nothing more than the title for Him to creep into my mind with his lies.

“Amazing?  What a joke!  You’re not amazing.  You nowhere near amazing.  You’ll never be amazing.”

Wanting to at least make it past the title, I trudged onward.  Just a few pages in, Holley shares a story in which she had a date with a friend.  This is the point in the book where I had to stop.  I couldn’t go any further.  I had to soak in this.  It was in this very moment, I needed to breath.  I needed to sit here a while and just breath in these words, grasping to believe it as truth, desperately trying to drown out Satan’s lies.

“It’s time you knew you’re amazing.  I mean it’s time you really knew…

You’re not only amazing.
You’re enough.
You’re beautiful.
You’re wanted.
You’re chosen.
You’re called.
You’ve got what it takes…not just to survive but to change the world.”

And as I settled on those words, like a wildfire burning out of control, Satan’s lies engulfed my mind.

“Amazing?  That’s a joke.  You’re nowhere near amazing.
You could never/will never be enough.
You fat, ugly and disgusting.
You’re unwanted.  Even your own parents didn’t want you.  Why would anyone else.
You can’t be chosen because you’re not good enough.
You can’t be called because you’re not smart enough.  Why would God want to use you?
You don’t have what it takes.  You won’t survive this, much less be able to have any kind of impact on the world.”

And that is where I often find myself, lost in this battle between truth and lies.  In an attempt to quiet the lies, I turned to God’s word.  I know this is what I am suppose to do but many times, I think I can fight on my own.  Most of those times, I lose.  So this morning, perhaps out of fear, sadness or desperation, I find myself clinging, with every bit of strength I have, to these words.

You’re enough.

“There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus,who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.”  Romans 8:1

“Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?”  1 Corinthians 3:16

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”  Psalm 139:14

You’re beautiful.

“He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.”  Ecclesiates 3:11

“And your fame spread among the nations on account of your beauty, because the splendor I had given you made your beauty perfect, declares the Sovereign LORD.”  Ezekial 16:14

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!”  2 Corinthians 5:17

You’re wanted.

“For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”  Romans 8:38-39

“Though my father and mother forsake me, the LORD will receive me.”  Psalm 27:10

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”  Deuteronomy 31:6

“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”  Deuteronomy 31:8

You’re chosen.

“But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”  1 Peter 2:9

“So, as those who have been chosen of God, holy and beloved, put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience;”  Colossians 3:12

You’re called.

“But now, this is what the LORD says– he who created you, Jacob, he who formed you, Israel: “Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name; you are mine.”  Isaiah 43:1

“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”  Romans 8:28

You’ve got what it takes…not just to survive but to change the world.

“But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.”  2 Corinthians 12:9

So this morning, I share this with you, not because I want to expose these tender moments of mine, but because I imagine I am not alone in my battle between the truth God wants us to hear and the lies Satan continues to throw our way.  I share this because I am weak but with God, I am strong.  I share this because in some way, I believe sharing my hope, will somehow give you a glimpse of hope.

I share this with you because you’re already amazing and you need to hear that until you are able to believe it!

If you haven’t read You’re Already Amazing by the wonderfully talented Holley Gerth, I encourage you to read it.  Right now it’s available on Amazon for Kindle at just $2.99 – it’s worth so much more!  And while you’re at it, tuck God’s truth in your heart right along with Holley’s words!
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