Most days we take God's love for granted. Did you wake up this morning with the thought — Wow, I know I'm completely loved by God, that all I really need, it will be a great day? God's love is a truth we accept with our minds, but rarely let seep into the deepest recesses of our souls. And, that is where we need God's love most.
Six hundred years ago, Julian of Norwich seized this truth with stunning simplicity when she wrote: Some of us believe that God is almighty and can do everything; and that he is all-wise and may do everything; but that he is all-love and will do everything–there we draw back. As I see it, this ignorance is the greatest of all hindrances to God's lovers. (As quoted in Abba's Child, by Brennan Manning, Navpress, 1994, p. 24) I recognize my own ignorance when it comes to the love of God. His love is so amazing, so unfathomable, that I don't let my mind even try to capture its reality.
How would your day be different if you centered your soul in the truth that you are totally and completely loved by God? Would it affect the decisions you make? How would it change the first thing you do when you get up? After pouring a cup or coffee or tea, would you sit in front of the television, or find a quiet place to open your Bible and take in more of God's love? When the washing machine breaks, or the project you've been working on for the past month falls apart would you cuss, walk out of the house or office, or stop and pray seeking God's help for facing this disappointing issue in your day?
Of all the writers in scripture the disciple John is one that seemed to understand God's love for him most. In the gospel he wrote he called himself the Beloved. This is the goal of my life. I'm hoping to grow spiritually into the place where I know my true identity is the beloved of God. John wrote in 1 John 3:1 How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called the children of God! And that is what we are! We have had the love of God lavished on us. How do we ignore it?
Rather than take in the deepest knowledge of God's lavish love, we spend our days siphoning love from all the wrong places. We get focused o that promotion, that vacation, that man of our dreams. Others, who have decided that love is no where in sight, spend their days lavishing in their failures, hurts and wounds. Henri Nouwen wrote; Self-rejection is the greatest enemy of the spiritual life because it contradicts the sacred voice that calls us the Beloved. Being the Beloved constitutes the core truth of our existence. (Henri Nouwen, Life of the Beloved, New York, Crossroads, 1992, p. 34)
When you wake up tomorrow tell yourself this truth: Wow, I am totally loved by God. How will I experience His love through all the good and bad that will be part of the day before me? How can I love Him in return?