Is God's love truly enough?
by Bibi Babatunde-Ikotun
It's the month of love and I'll like to talk to you about love. If you follow me on social media, you'd know that I'm a big advocate of showing love to people even when they are undeserving because we've been enabled as believers. This may be helpful fo whatever situation you're in or just serve as an encouragement in your daily struggles. I pray that you continue to yield to the Holy Spirit.
The greatest show of love ever recorded in the world is the crucifixion of Jesus. I know it isn't an easter period where everyone chooses to deliver a powerful message about the cross. However, I just want to talk to you about God's love toward you and how it can impact everything that concerns you.
Here are some of my thoughts on the love to God to the believer, the unbeliever and pretty much anybody curious about God's love.
Being bad is the qualification for God's loveRomans 5:8 (AMPC) But God shows and clearly proves His [own] love for us by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) died for us.
I have had people reach out to me saying "Bibi, I don't think God loves me". It breaks my heart because I am convinced that God doesn't hate anyone. Sometimes we "feel" like God doesn't love us because we're imperfect and make mistakes, thankfully we've seen in bible not to be led by feelings but His words (Jeremiah 17:9). Here's the gist, if you were good, perfect and morally upright you wouldn't have needed to be saved. God would have just overlooked sending Jesus to come and die for you. But because you were so bad alongside the terrorist, serial killers, child molesters, robbers, ritualists and He came to die for all of us. If God can love you so deeply while you're dead in sins being in Christ has become another layer of assurance that His love is more real, deeper and more intense than your mind can ever comprehend. His love is not defined by the lack you experience or pain you feel or your life experiences, His love is defined by the cross alone.
Remember the parable of the great banquet as narrated in the gospel of Matthew 22:1-14, the whole world was invited to come and dine with the king. The only qualification was to wear the wedding outfit as given. The man who was found without the wedding clothes probably thought his cloth was better than the one the King ordered. That's an illustration of us thinking we were good enough to be saved but that's never the case. Christ remains a gift to the bad boys and girls like you and me. The one who receives Christ into their life finally gets a chance to conform to the image of Christ and become perfect as God.
God doesn't love person A more than person B
Romans 2:11 (AMPC) For God shows no partiality [d]undue favor or unfairness; with Him one man is not different from another].
We may look at some people in our circles and feel as though God loves them more than He loves us. Why? Maybe things work out so effortlessly for them. They graduate from school so effortlessly, they get married before 25, they have a house by 27 and all these amazing just happen to them just like that. Sometimes, they may even be unbelievers. You begin to ask yourself, why is my life like this while this person's life is not like this. If care is not taken, you can drive yourself into the pit of jealousy and envy.
Relax bro/sis and refer to point one. God's love can never be judged by material things. Re-orient your mind about judging God's love based on human happenings. Invest more time in your relationship with Him. Don't practice religion by going to church, reading the bible for reading sakes and praying one-side prayers. Spend time with God like you will spend with a lover and let Him reveal His mind to you. If you don't have a relationship with the Holy Spirit, how can you receive direction from Him about your life? Remember, God created you and put His purpose in you. Only Him has the manual for your functionality, you have to consult Him to know it.
God does not love your pastor or Bishop more than He loves you.
You have the capacity to love way past your understandingRomans 5:5 (AMPC) Such hope never disappoints or deludes or shames us, for God’s love has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit Who has been given to us.
The bible makes us understand that God's love is thick, fierce, unconditional, never-ending, doesn't fade, doesn't shake etc. This exact same kind of love to the fullest measure has been worked into you when you received Jesus into your life. The day that you went forward and said the sinner's prayer and invited God to come an make your heart His home, that day you received God's own capacity to love. The love of God has been poured another version says "gushed" into your own heart.
With this kind of love dwelling in us, there's absolutely no room for anger, malice, strive, lasciviousness, jealousy, bitterness and the rest of it's kind. There's no space for it. You have to keep reminding yourself daily that you have God's kind of love in your heart and you choose to express it to everyone around you whether they are worthy of it or not.
Loving genuinely is easier when your source is the love of God1 John 4:7-8 (AMPC) Beloved, let us love one another, for love is (springs) from God; and he who loves [his fellowmen] is begotten (born) of God and is coming [progressively] to know and understand God [to perceive and recognize and get a better and clearer knowledge of Him]. He who does not love has not become acquainted with God [does not and never did know Him], for God is love.
God created everyone and unfortunately due to the fall of man, we were separated from God. However, everything He designed in us still exists in us. Through Christ, we have been united with God. We are back in an indestructible union with God. Loving people without Christ dwelling in us is an extreme sport. This is because we are not connected to the source of love (God) or some of us are connected but don't know who God truly is. There's a tainted image of God in the world that an understanding of the gospel unveils for us.
If you know God truly, you'll not treat other people badly, you won't encourage any form of violence, you won't physically or emotionally assault people. It is a great dishonour to say you know God and you lay your hands on your wife or husband. It is also a great dishonour to say you know God and engage in pre or extra-marital affairs. I pray that we all experience a clearer picture of God so we can genuinely love like He does.
Nothing can separate you from the love of God
I don't have to add my thoughts to this point but I want you to read these scriptures yourself.
Romans 8:38-39 (AMPC)
Who shall ever separate us from Christ’s love? Shall suffering and affliction and tribulation? Or calamity and distress? Or persecution or hunger or destitution or peril or sword? Even as it is written, For Thy sake we are put to death all the day long; we are regarded and counted as sheep for the slaughter. Yet amid all these things we are more than conquerors [a]and gain a surpassing victory through Him Who loved us. For I am persuaded beyond doubt (am sure) that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things [b]impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, Nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
This brings me to the end of my gist today. Is God's love truly enough for you? That's for you to reflect on and perhaps read the bible to see these things for yourself. His love is more than enough for me whether I'm in lack or plenty. Christ has become my sufficiency, not my bank account, my car, my job and other things. I stay with Christ because of all that He has done for me, most especially the spiritual impact of His crucifixion.
"Not that I am implying that I was in any personal want, for I have learned how to be content (satisfied to the point where I am not disturbed or disquieted) in whatever state I am. I know how to be abased and live humbly in straitened circumstances, and I know also how to enjoy plenty and live in abundance. I have learned in any and all circumstances the secret of facing every situation, whether well-fed or going hungry, having a sufficiency and enough to spare or going without and being in want. I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency]". - Apostle Paul in his letter to the Philippians.
With all my love,BIbi