He Is Love
By Emily Spademan, Soul Survivor: Called to Lead
I was a very moody teenager. If something upset me: it really upset me. I would shout and cry and sigh loudly, and my parents would send me upstairs to my room to cool down: which would frustrate me even more. I loved my parents, but my actions showed otherwise and that hurt them. Their love for me could have caused them to give in and give me what I wanted, but they loved me at a deeper level than that. My behavior was wrong, and for me to learn to behave correctly I needed their discipline.
Throughout the Old Testament we have seen Israel mess up time after time. One minute they’re telling God they love Him; the next they’re turning their backs; and God can’t just stand back and watch them. At this point they’re in exile and God speaks to them, saying “I have…punished you as would the cruel, because your guilt is so great and your sins so many.” God’s love for Israel could have caused him to give in and just let them continue sinning, but He loves at a deeper level than that. In fact, He IS love. Not only is He love; He is holy. He is set apart from all else. He is wholly good. He can’t be around our sin, but He wants to be around us because He loves us. So He restores us. In Jeremiah we see God’s promise to “restore [Israel] to health and heal [their] wounds.”, and His love went deeper still when He came down to take our sin on the cross so we could have relationship with us. When we mess up, when we hurt God and other people, He promises to restore us too.
There is still a lot of hurt and sin in the World; but we know that Jesus is strong enough to conquer any amount of sin; and in 2 Thessalonians Paul reminds us of the hope that Jesus is going to come again and bring full restoration. When he talks of “the man of lawlessness”, he says that “the Lord Jesus will overthrow [him] with the breath of his mouth and destroy [him] by the splendour of his coming.” This is the same Jesus – the same God – who constantly restored Israel because of His love, and who is willing to give us restoration on a daily basis when we ask Him for it.
As God restores us, let our prayer be that He would “direct [us] in the path of [His] commands, for there [we] find delight.” He is love, He is holy, and we want to show Him that we love Him.
Today’s picture was taken by…
Tom Cross. Thanks Tom!
If you’d like to take your own picture to potentially be featured on the blog, then get your Soul Survivor Bible in One Year, and take a picture of yourself – and your Bible – at some interesting or colourful location. Then email it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The pictures will need to be a pretty good resolution (we use 640px by 360 px so at least as big as that), landscape photos work best and if you include the day of the reading in the picture then make sure you send it to us a good few days before that reading, so we have time to include it in that day’s post! We’ll credit all photographers!