Last month, I was honored to share with you one of the short devotionals I share with my kids, Annie and Opie, each morning. At the beginning of January 2016, I resolved to summarize my morning Bible study and share them first with Annie, and then with Opie as well, as a way to encourage them and myself each day.
I’ve shared numerous times about the ongoing battle Annie faces each day against debilitating pain. We have had many highs and lows throughout her journey, each day waking and trusting today could be the day that God brings ultimate healing to Annie’s body. While we are still expectantly waiting for that day, we have seen God speak to us in such tender ways through his Word.
Earlier this month, I shared another devotional with Annie and Opie on feeling God’s love. February has become a “month of love” in our culture, but sometimes we need to stop and fix our eyes once again on God’s truly unconditional love for us when we’re expectantly waiting and hoping for something – healing, a relationship, or maybe a life-long dream – that for now eludes us. I hope you find these words encouraging, just as Annie, Opie and myself have been encouraged by God’s love for us each day.
Dearest Opie and Annie,
Annie, you did an amazing job pushing through another day. Opie, I assume from seeing your texts late last night that you are feeling better. I am thankful to God for that. It makes a big difference when we FEEL good. I cannot wait for Annie to FEEL good again. As we wait, pray, have faith, and trust in God’s timing on Annie’s healing, I am hoping all three of us FEEL God’s love today.
Today, I am thinking about how God’s love is like that of a young toddler. He runs and hugs us, no matter what we’re facing, how our day is going, or how we may have failed. In fact, the entire Bible is about God’s love for us.
In Psalm 86 we see that God’s love is both great and personal. David is honest about the wrath he is facing from evil people who mean to do him harm. But he felt God’s love in the midst of his trial, and in verse 13 he says, “Great is your love toward me.” David longed for an undivided heart for God (verse 11), and he wanted to respond to God’s love for him by committing himself totally to God.
In Romans 4:16-5:1, Paul also shares how God’s love was demonstrated – poured out on the people – as he explained to them what God did to make Abraham a righteous man and “the father of many nations.” Paul tells us how Abraham had faith that God would follow through on His promise of a child, even though his wife was old and barren, and that God always keeps His word and does what He promised.
Like Abraham, we are justified by faith and there is no barrier between us and God. In fact, God demonstrated His true love for us by sacrificing His own son so our sins would be forgiven. I can’t begin to fathom that demonstration of true love.
God has promised that our trials will produce character, and character produces HOPE. Hope will not disappoint us, because “God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit whom he has given us.” When hope starts to elude us, we can turn to the true love that God has for us and trust in His promises. Be encouraged today by God’s promises, and never stop hoping and trusting that He will do what He says.