‘The Lord did not set his affection on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples. But it was because the Lord loved you and kept the oath he swore to your ancestors that he brought you out with a mighty hand’ Deuteronomy 7.7
We find it so hard to believe that God loves us just for who we are. Deep down inside we suspect that he loves us because we are good, or because we mean well or try hard. Therefore when we sense that we are not good or doing well, it can be hard to believe that God loves us at all.
Yet this encouraging verse is right there in the first few books of the Bible, reminding us that God’s activity on our behalf is all down to the fact that he loves us. His motive and the driving force behind all his actions is the profound depth of his love towards us.
When we are in need it is very natural to begin to bargain with God; if he shows love towards us, then in return we promise to do something sacrificial for him. Whether or not we are in need, the place we need to come back to is the certainty of his love for us. The new covenant that Jesus made with us was not an agreement that we could bargain with God for his goodness, but rather an agreement that he would give himself totally for us and do everything needed to release the action of God to us. Once again it comes back to his love and not our goodness or whether we deserve it.
As you begin to pray, let these words from 1 John 4.16 flow through your mind: ‘… we know and rely on the love God has for us.’
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission
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