Jesus loves me. This I know, for the Bible tells me so. This was probably one of the first songs I ever learned. As a little girl, I would dance around the house in my princess gowns, singing of how Jesus loved me. There was never a doubt in my little mind.
But, as David Dunn’s song goes, then I grew up and then I got older. The idea of a God relentlessly loving me got painted over with the hurts of other relationships. What they had taught me was that I was only worth being pursued until the next best thing came along. Only when it was convenient. Love wasn’t patient and kind, but fickle and selfish. It was passive and often disengaged. Love often walked out the door and didn’t come back.
So God loved me. I knew it in my head but my heart couldn’t grasp everything it meant. It wasn’t until I did a bible study on Hosea (link) that I was struck with the God John talked about when he wrote “God is love” (1 John 4:8).
Can I tell you something? Our God is not a lukewarm god. He’s not a disengaged god. He’s not a half-hearted god. Look through all the Old Testament and you will find a god of thunder. When he saw us drowning in our sin, facing eternal separation from him, he didn’t shrug his shoulders and say, “Eh they’ll figure it out eventually.” No. He stepped down from heaven, took on the weight of every sin and died. For me.
Repeat that sentence back to yourself. He was willing to put everything on the line for you.
If you look through scripture for verses on God’s love for us, you will come back with words like lavished, unfailing, abounding, and faithful. Zephaniah 3:17 says that God delights in us. Hosea 2:14 says, “Therefore I will allure her; I will lead her into the wilderness and speak tenderly to her.” Countless times God describes himself as the bridegroom and us as his bride. If you’ve never thought about it, consider it now: God is pursuing your heart.
This love is not passive. It doesn’t play games. It’s not waiting for you to make the first move. God already made it before you had even drawn your first breath and he has been relentlessly pursuing you ever since. He is all in.
When my adult idea of God’s love came face to face with this reality, it. changed. everything.
God was right there. He was pursuing me. Somehow in my walk I had switched those two. I thought I had to do more–to be more–to capture his attention. But when so many others had walked out, he was right there. Arms wide. Pursuing me. Wanting me. Why? I’ll never know, but here’s the thing: When someone loves you like that, it’s hard not to respond in kind. All that head knowledge I’d had for so long finally made it’s way deep down into my heart.
Jesus loves me. This I know, for the Bible tells me so.