Thursday, February 14, 2008

the love of God in Jesus

The love of God in Jesus has reached down to the world, down to us, to each one of us to lift us out of ourselves to find our true selves in God, to find our true home in him and in his good world among others. This happened through God coming down to earth, right where we live, and actually becoming one of us in his Son, in Jesus. Living a human life, then dying for us and for our sins. Resurrected to a new life, a new creation. Ascended and having poured out the Spirit through whom we live and know this love of God in Jesus.

This love changed my life radically, years ago. I was a renegade, angry at the world, angry at everything including God. But God gently did his work to bring me to repentance and faith in Jesus. One day I put my faith and trust in God through Jesus, simply commiting my life to God because of what Jesus did for me, for us, in dying on the cross. People saw overnight that the old Ted was gone, a new Ted had come.

Over the years this love of God in Jesus continues God's work in me. To love God, to love others, even to love myself as one created and loved by God. To grow involving ongoing change, so that I can more and more know this love with others of God's people. And that we can make that love known to the world.

This is a love that will not let me go. Not in my own sin and deceit; God has had to rescue me both directly and through his people. It's a love that we learn more and more to accept, to treasure, and to live in. A love that loves us, even when we're unloving and unloveable. The love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord's people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Ephesians 3

May we by faith come to know this love in Jesus, for ourselves, and for each other, and for the world. Through Jesus our Lord.

What might you like to share here about the love of God in Jesus?


lorenzothellama said...

Do you know that wonderful hymn
"Oh love that will not let me go"?
That was one of the nice things about going to the Methodist church. We had such wonderful hymns, before the modern style worship took over and it became rock bands, designed only to appeal to the teenagers.
Love Grumpy Old Llama

Halfmom, AKA, Susan said...

That is one of my favorite scriptures Ted - oh that we might really know - and it would change us from the inside out.

It is is hard to understand the tender side of God's love for us - at least for me it is. And yet, the nature of His sacrifice is so represented in the tender buying back of a willful, sinful and as you say, renegade people.

LtL - the hymns are wonderful and fill my days with great wonder by means of CDs and my piano!

Rachel Mc said...

This is an great post, and it reminds me that I need to work on accepting God's love and to treasure it. I really like your words "grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ" I am going to carry that quote with me. Thanks!

preacherman said...

Excellent post my brother.
What love God has for us?
Can we measure it?
Can we fathom it?
Grasp it?
He expressed it in a way that we can never begin to imagaine. I have 3 sons. Never could I give them up for people who might not love me in return or appreciate the love I have for them in the offering. Yet, God. Yet God, so loved us and that love that we have in Christ is the warmest, truest, authentic love we will ever recieve in life. If we, will only accept it. The love of God in Jesus that I recieved by God grace motivates me to love because God is love. I pray that all men and women will recieve the love of God in Jesus. I pray that when they do that their lives will never be the same again. I pray that out of that love that every believer will be motivate to love because God Himself, is LOVE.
Thank you so much Ted for your wonder post this morning. Your thoughts challenge and inspire us to be better Christians. Inspire us to walk as Jesus walk. Your blog give me strength.
I hope you have a blessed day brother.
In Him,
Kinney Mabry

Ted M. Gossard said...

haha, Lorenzo t L,
Yes, I like a mix of both the hymns and some of the contemporary songs. And even a mix of the way we sing them and the way they're played.

But that is a wonderful hymn. I think it's a great one for a soloist, and maybe not so great for congregational singing, as its range is quite wide. But the words are great, period:

"Oh love that will not let me go; I rest my weary soul on thee"; etc.

Ted M. Gossard said...

That is such a rich and deep Scripture. I treasure it more by faith than by experience, though I think the Lord has given me enough of the taste of it, that all else really is insipid in comparison, or with a terrible aftertaste, at least! To even talk about those words seems worse than trivial; they're so wonderful.

The tender aspect of God's love. Yes. I think those of us who have suffered even for our own wrongful doings, yes, sins, sometimes can be more open to that tenderness, even when we don't really understand it. It helps me so much to know that Jesus lived here just like any of us, fully human, and therefore in a firsthand experiential way, empathizes with us in that tender love. I wish I was more open to that; I want to be.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Yes, those words from Scripture, I ought myself to hang up in front of me as a reminder, and to dwell on them myself. So easy to not let our hearts be taken and changed by that love of God in Jesus.

Ted M. Gossard said...

I'm rather overcome by your words, so utterly gracious and kind and appreciative of my simple and humble blogging. It is what is, and I tend to be much aware of what it is not, though I've learned to accept myself and who I am, and appreciate the strengths I find in other brothers (and sistes) like yourself.

You are a son of encouragement, a Barnabas. Blessings on you, and glad you're feeling better. Am continuing to pray for you.

Ted M. Gossard said...

And yes, Kinney. I think it's the love of God in Jesus that people need to see.

At the same time people need to see that love in the light of the full revelation of God, which includes God's wrath, which really, surely, is an expression of his love, his jealous and righteous love. And needed, when we consider the sorry state of much of our world in terms of the wicked and evildoers. While at the same time being thankful, because there's evil right in each of us, thankful for this love for us, in Christ, that receives us through Christ's sacrifice of love for us.

Anonymous said...

Peace and Love of God through Jesus to you and your family!

L.L. Barkat said...

It is good to hear this little bit from you about how things were before you were gently retrieved by God. I love how He changes us bit by bit with his truth and grace.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Thanks, and same to yours.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Thanks. Yes, you use to get after me a little to share more about myself on my posts. But yes, it is good, the Lord's working.

preacherman said...

Well put brother.