This morning before I started my devotion time I got on Facebook and as I looked through I saw many posts regarding the home-going of Billy Graham. My mind took me to his crusades and instantly I heard in my mind, George Beverly Shea singing, “O Love That Will Not Let Me Go.” I then remembered a Scripture in Jeremiah, “…I have loved you with an everlasting love…” The entire Scripture reads, “The Lord appeared to him from afar, saying, ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness.’” I began to think of how much God loves us. The song echoes God’s love for us. The lyrics sink deep into my heart as I sing it.
O love that will not let me go, I rest my weary soul on Thee;
I give Thee back the life I owe, That in Thine ocean depths its flow
May richer, fuller be.
O Light that follow’st my way, I yield my flick’ring torch to Thee;
My heart restores its borrowed ray, That in Thy sunshine’s glow its day
May brighter, fairer be.
O Joy that seekest me thro’ pain, I cannot close my heart to Thee;
I trace the rainbow thro’ the rain, And feel the promise is not vain
That morn shall tearless be.
O Cross that liftest up my head, I dare not ask to hide from Thee;
I lay in dust life’s glory dead, And from the ground there blossoms red
Life that shall endless be.
The words of this song tug strongly on my heart. To know that God loves me forever and promises to be by my side throughout everything I face…joy, sorrow, pain, health, poverty, and wealth! I can’t earn it, I don’t deserve it, but still He loves me above anything I can imagine and more than any human can!
For some people, this can be hard to grasp because they have never known love. They may have been abused or lived in a family where love was not demonstrated openly. Maybe when they reached out for love they were strongly rejected, abused, reprimanded, or ignored. For them, God’s love seems out of reach. They feel as though they are unlovable. What they don’t realize is, God created them out of love, His love, and He wants them to know Him intimately!
My image of God is one of extreme compassion. Hebrews 4:16 is my favorite verse and I’ve made it my life verse. “Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” In my mind I see God as my Heavenly Father, my Abba, not sitting on a cold intimidating throne, but resting in a large, overstuffed chair, beckoning me to come sit on his lap. As I crawl up into His lap, He wraps His arms around me, tells me He loves me, and asks me to tell Him what is heavy on my heart. That image in my mind has carried me through some very hard times. Especially when my first husband passed away. I was always in God’s lap pouring my heart out. He just hugged me tighter and said, “Daughter, it will be alright. Abba is here.” God knew I can’t do life alone and brought me a wonderful man who has a heart for God and ministry. Oh, how much my Abba Father loves me! My friend, He loves you also. Come to Him today with everything that is on your heart. He will listen, He will hold you, and above all He will love you!