The Lord your God is in your midst,
the Mighty One Who will save,
He will rejoice over you with gladness;
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.
“God loves us not in a way that makes us supreme, but makes Himself supreme. Heaven will not be a hall of mirrors, but an increasing vision of infinite greatness. Getting to heaven and finding that we are supreme would be the ultimate letdown.
The greatest love makes sure that God does everything in such a way as to uphold and magnify His own supremacy so that, when we get to heaven, we have something to increase our joy forever: God’s glory. The greatest love is God’s giving Himself to us for our eternal enjoyment, at the cost of his Son’s life (Romans 8:32). That is what He means when He says that He loves us and forgives us for His own name’s sake.”
John Piper, The Greatest Love (listen/read whole meditation here)
There is no fear in love, but perfect love drives out fear, because fear involves punishment. The one who fears has not been perfected in love. 1 John 4:18
[ Click on each word to access the original Greek words and meanings. ]
“Based on consciousness of guilt, fear anticipates a deserved punishment, producing dread that is itself a foretaste of that punishment, Christ died to set us free from this dread” (NIV Life Application Study Bible commentary).Because God’s children are human beings—made of flesh and blood—the Son also became flesh and blood. For only as a human being could He die, and only by dying could He break the power of the devil, who had the power of death. Only in this way could He set free all who have lived their lives as slaves to the fear of dying.
Hebrews 2:14-15 NLT
I once was so afraid. I meditated and tried to overcome my raging thoughts, tumultuous with anxiety based in trauma from my past.
I finally hit rock bottom after demons wracked my mind with lies and led me into intense psychosis and despair. Just saying the powerful Name of Jesus cast them out (I felt a huge wave of raging energy flee my body) and electroshock therapy jolted me awake from believing the lies for so long (full story here). Yet I found myself just waiting to die, feeling I had nothing left, all the power I thought I had was gone. I was still so confused what had happened, it seemed like such a great loss.
But I started reading the Bible. Every other spiritual pursuit had let me down. Every love outside my family’s agape love had let me down. They were grounded in the Creator of all things, and they met with Him throughout the day in His Word and in prayer. They had been there and supported me through my entire trial, and had been patiently, lovingly, calling me back to the only One who gives life, the only One who is love. I was ready to go back to Him after 3-4 years of running after all the idols of the earth.
“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.” 1 John 4:16
I didn’t know love anymore. I read back through old journals where I wrote about wanting to “become love” but it was really only about loving myself. On the next page I was hatefully cussing out anyone who didn’t share my perspectives on what’s right in life. I was so blind to the evil in my heart, so deluded to think I was a “being of love”.
When God opened my eyes to behold Him more and more, He exposed all the evil thoughts and feelings lurking inside. At first I thought, this isn’t like me, why am I thinking like this?? And He nudged my thoughts to help me realize, Oh, this is me, I just never really noticed before. I was too busy judging others and justifying myself to see who I truly am, a sinner, deserving of infinite death. A debt I could never pay.
But Jesus paid it all.
He made the way through His flesh, through His blood, to come to God.
God. The infinitely holy God, who created us to have fellowship, holy intimacy in unlimited ecstasy, with Him, to experience His ceaseless outpouring of love, truth, light, peace, rest, fulfillment, perfection, and grace. Grace, the aspect Adam did not know until he chose to be his own god, to glory in himself instead of the One he was created to enjoy.
The ultimate disappointment. But God overwhelms it with a greater hope: you will witness My grace and love poured out like never before.
“Behold, I am making all things new!” Yahweh declares in Revelation 21:5.
“By this is love perfected in us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgement, because as He is, so also are we in the world.”
1 John 4:17
I long to be loving, to pour out God’s love on others. When I try to conjure my concept of love within myself, however, I burn out quickly. I can only truly love others when my heart is consciously completely dependent upon God to fill me with His love. I can only do this by meditating in His Word daily and praying constantly.
For God is love. I certainly am not. My love is conditional, my love fails. I get weary and stressed and struggle with resentment. But God loves His enemies and His friends unconditionally, and when I abide in His love, my heart changes toward those toward whom I have struggled with bitterness and hatred. God’s love for them is eternal.
LORD God Almighty, I long to love You with all my heart, soul, mind and strength (Deuteronomy 6:5). But I am so weak and foggy, I cannot unless You pour Your love into my heart and overflow me toward You.
O LORD let my heart mind and soul behold You! Open my eyes and clear the fog that I may worship You in fullness, uninhibited by earthly snares, idolotry, covetousness, weariness..please save me from myself! I need You.
Teach me to abide in Your love.
Read more about God’s infinite love poured out upon us here: Divine Blood: Portal of Life.
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