One of the things that I have wrestled with most of my life is the fact that God knows our thoughts, hurts and struggles with sin even if we do not talk to Him about it. And He continues to love us. How could God continue to pursue me when I have all but flat out denied Him? When I have fallen so deep into my own sinfulness and shame, why would God even want me at that point? I have failed God time, and time, and time, and time, and… well, you get it. But one thing has stayed constant…
He has yet to fail me.
I recently faced a time in my life that was full of doubt. I questioned God. His goodness. His faithfulness. His mercy. His grace. His love. I started to wonder if he even cared about me. Of course, I never verbally acknowledged this. But in my mind and heart, I doubted every part of His existence in my life. I could not feel Him close. He felt like a distant memory rather than a living and loving Father. I thought my sin and shame had pushed God so far away.
But amidst my doubt and pain God showed me just who He was.
I recently finished a book called “The Ragamuffin Gospel by Brennan Manning. (If you haven’t read this, do it. It will change your life.) There is quote from it that simply states this:
“My deepest awareness of myself is that I am deeply loved by Jesus Christ and I have done nothing to earn it or deserve it.”
From the moment I read this, God started to show me exactly who I was. He made Himself so much more real than I have ever experienced. He showed me just how loving, caring, good, gracious, and faithful He really is. Because in those moments of my doubts God was screaming at me. Not an angry scream, but a loud insertion of His love into my heart and mind. God is louder than ever within our doubts. He does not flee because we are stuck within our sin and shame. Rather, he chases us down even more.
Our God loves us despite if we fail to love Him.
I thank the Lord that I do not have to earn His love. I never have to worry about being good enough, holy enough, righteous enough, or even acknowledge Him enough. He loves me because He loves me, not because I love Him. He is gracious because He is gracious, not because I earned any grace. He chases me down and silences my doubts because He is a God who loves His children and pursues His sheep.
There is nothing we can do to change who He is and His love for us.
How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I wrestle with my thoughts
and day after day have sorrow in my heart?
How long will my enemy triumph over me?
Look on me and answer, Lord my God.
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death,
and my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,”
and my foes will rejoice when I fall.
But I trust in your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in your salvation.
I will sing the Lord’s praise,
for he has been good to me.