People who believe they are fully loved live differently. I want to live differently.
Today, we are going to take a “Posture of Peace” by relying on the love that God has for us.
Posture is a short, audible fist bump to remind you, God is with you in everything. Together, we’re going to be emboldened to take a daily Posture of perfect peace.
So yes, we are talking more about love today. It’s really the theme of the week. The Lord has, I just think reawakened my heart to the profound truth of His love for us. And so today I’m gonna be reading from 1 John 4:16. It says, “So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love. And whoever abides in love, abides in God, and God in him.” Now, I just read from the ESV translation. The NIV translation of this verse says, “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.”
That word rely just captured my heart. The word that’s used here for believe or rely on which I will not even try to pronounce in the Greek because I’m not a Greek scholar, and I don’t pretend to be, but I encourage you to look up that word. That word used here in the original Greek is so much stronger than just thinking or feeling like something is true. It’s speaking of an activating trust, a trust that is so deep, you act upon it. You live in it. It’s not like, I think this is true. No, it’s I live this certain way because I know this is true. I know God is love. I know God loves me. I know God loves you. Now, it may sound simplistic to some of you, especially if you’ve been a Christian for a while because you’ve probably heard about the love of God for years, but this is not a simplistic truth.
This is a very big deal. I think that this is the whole deal because people who believe they are fully loved live differently. There is a subtleness. There is a peace, a joy, a confidence that cannot be shaken from people who believe that they are fully loved. But for many of us, and myself included, I’m not just picking on you, even though we may believe God is love, even though we may have been told a thousand times that God loves us, that God specifically, not generically, but specifically loves you. Not partially, but fully loves you. Even if we’ve heard that a thousand times, we still sometimes waiver with this truth. We go back and forth in our heads, in our hearts about whether we are loved, liked, and fully accepted by God. And perhaps this is because we are more familiar with imperfect love than with His perfect love. Maybe it’s because we attribute to Him a love like we’ve experienced in this world from other people which it has often conditions and it’s based on our performance or our behavior, and it can fade or it can be exhausted or it can be frustrated. We’ve been abandoned, we’ve been broken up with, we’ve been left behind by people who have said at one time that they loved us because people are imperfect. And so their love therefore is imperfect. And when we experience an imperfect love, we often put up walls to protect ourselves from ever fully relying on imperfect love again. But in doing so, we sometimes also shut ourselves off from relying on the perfect love of our Heavenly Father. But people who believe that they are fully loved, live differently. And I don’t know about you, but I wanna live differently. I don’t wanna live in fear or suspicion. I don’t wanna be tossed around by double mindedness when it comes to God’s love for me.
What happens when we rely on this perfect love? Well, according to 1 John, it doesn’t just flow in us, it flows through us. Let me read this again, starting in verse 16. So we have come to know and to believe, or to rely on the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love, abides in God and God abides in him.” Verse 17, “By this love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment because as He is,” speaking of Jesus, So are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love cast out fear, for fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love. We love because He first loved us.”
I wanna encourage you today to become familiar with, more familiar with the perfect love of our Heavenly Father than with the imperfect love of this world. I wanna encourage you to begin to rely on this love like never before, to entrust yourself to His love, to no longer waiver back and forth about whether He loves you or not, whether you deserve it or not. He has spoken. He has proven through the sacrifice of Jesus that you are loved, and Jesus’ sacrifice and resurrection established that you are fully accepted. So rely on that today because when we begin to live in full reliance, in full assurance of this love, it doesn’t just flow in us, it flows through us.