Laurie Coombs is a passionate writer and speaker on the issues of forgiveness, redemption, and the hope found in Jesus. She is the author of Letters from My Father’s Murderer: A Journey of Forgiveness, an incredible true story of grace, mercy, and the redemptive power of God. Her story was featured in Billy Graham’s film, Heaven, as well as on many other national and regional radio and television programs. She is a contributor to Zondervan’s NIV Bible for Women and writes at LaurieCoombs.org. Laurie and her husband, Travis, make their home in Nevada along with their three daughters.
Last week, I wrote about how important it is to engage in the pursuit to know God. About how we can use a Biblically accurate understanding of who God is to see the world and ourselves as they truly are. All truth, remember, begins and ends with God.
There is, of course, so much to know about our God. Truly, we will never be able to fully grasp all that He is, and I think that's okay. I don't know about you, but I don't want a God who is able to be fully grasped by a mind limited by humanity. I love how J.I. Packer put it. He said, “A God whom we could understand exhaustively, and whose revelation of Himself confronted us with no mysteries whatsoever, would be a God in man's image, and therefore an imaginary God, not the God of the Bible at all.”
But God does reveal Himself to both you and me in Scripture, so that we might find joy in Him. As John Piper wrote, “But to enjoy him we must know him. Seeing is savoring. If he remains a blurry, vague fog, we may be intrigued for a season. But we will not be stunned with joy, as when the fog clears and you find yourself on the brink of some vast precipice.” And so, our pursuit of God persists.
I think, perhaps, one of the greatest revelations we're given about God is that "God is love," (1 John 4:8). The Apostle John once said, "This is love: not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.... We love because He first loved us." (1 John 4:10, 19 NIV). Love originates with God. God is not just loving. He is love. The complete embodiment of love. And it is the love of God that sustains us.
One of the many things I love about our God is that when we walk with Him, He makes each of us feel like we're the only one He could possibly love so much. Like there's no one else in this world that He sees at any given moment. Like we're His favorite.
All throughout scripture, we hear God say things like,
"'Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are Mine'" (Isaiah 43:1).
"...you are precious in My eyes, and honored, and I love you..." (Isaiah 43:4).
"'...behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age'” (Matthew 28:20).
God loves us. So much so that we're told, "The LORD your God is in your midst, a mighty One who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exult over you with loud singing" (Zephaniah 3:17). God sings over us. Can you believe that?
Understanding the love of God for you is perhaps one of the greatest things you can know. We are loved with an unquenchable love. A love that pursues us relentlessly with unfathomable devotion. A love that will never, never let us go.
We're given assurance given of His love in Romans 8:34-39. It says,
"Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? As it is written:
'For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.'
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord."
Know who you are in Christ. Know that God loves you. That He will never leave you nor forsake you (Deuteronomy 31:6, Matthew 28:20). Remember that, if you've given your heart to Jesus, you are a child of God. You are His. And you are loved.
Make a joyful noise to the Lord, all the earth!
Serve the Lord with gladness!
Come into His presence with singing!
Know that the Lord, He is God!
It is He who made us, and we are His;
we are His people, and the sheep of His pasture.
Enter His gates with thanksgiving,
and His courts with praise!
Give thanks to Him; bless His name!
For the Lord is good;
His steadfast love endures forever,
and His faithfulness to all generations.