In my previous post I wrote about the need for us to be grateful. That, in fact, it is God’s will for is that in everything we are grateful. Here’s the post if you missed it.
What I want to think about today is choosing to see God’s love. Again, this is a choice that I make. A decision to follow and a task to undertake. Today I choose to see God’s love.
Read Lamentations 3:21-25:
But this I call to mind,
and therefore I have hope:
22 The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;
his mercies never come to an end;
23 they are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
24 “The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“therefore I will hope in him.”
25 The Lord is good to those who wait for him,
to the soul who seeks him.
I taught Lamentations last week and was struck by how Jeremiah chooses to see God’s love. By way of a reminder, Jeremiah is sitting just north of Jerusalem watching his beloved city burning. For 40 years he had been warning the nation of God’s judgement and they didn’t heed the warning. Notice the first few words: “But this I call to mind”. That’s a choice Jeremiah is making. He is undertaking to look beyond the fire and rumble of Jerusalem and to the steadfast love of the Lord that never ceases. Even though his circumstances speak otherwise, Jeremiah is choosing to be reminded that God is a God of love and his mercies do not fail.
When things are tough, it’s easy to look inward. It’s easy to look at the trouble. It’s easy to allow the weight to become heavier and heavier. I often find that it’s at those times I need to choose to see God’s love. Most of the time, if I’m honest, I don’t have the inclination to do this – but I must. I must choose today to see God’s love and make a mental note of it. When I do this, of course, I find that there are plenty of examples of God showing His love to me.
What this suggests of course is that even in suffering and pain, God is working for our good. We don’t always see this taking place, and it can be a tremendously painful journey but ultimately we won’t be all that God intends us to be if all we do is run to the sunshine. The answer to pain is not to take it away or make us feel better. The answer to pain is to bow under God’s sovereign purposes. To submit to his rightful rule, knowing that God loves me.
Some words of encouragement come from Nancy Leigh DeMoss in her book Lies Women Believe :
“Your night of weeping may go on for months or even years. But if you are a child of God, it will not go on forever. God has determined the exact duration of your suffering, and it will not last one moment longer than He knows is necessary to achieve His holy, eternal purpose in and through your life”
Make a list of the ways in which God shows you that He loves you and that He is caring for you. Think about what your trial is producing in you (James 1:3-4, Romans 8:37, 2 Corinthians 12:7), as well as how God uses others around you to show His love to you.
Today, choose to see God’s love toward you.