Sunday, January 30, 2011

to be known is to be loved

Yesterday, I read my favorite Bible story in John 4:4-42. This story recounts the time Jesus spent with a Samaritan woman at the well. There are so many things I love about this story. The Lord has used its beautiful message many times to speak to my heart in various ways through the years. But what I came back to yesterday was the fact that the Samaritan woman rejoiced because she was known. 

Oftentimes, people are afraid to come to the Lord because of this very fact-He knows everything. But this fact is what makes life with Him so wonderfully free. The enemy wants us to believe that we should be ashamed of our past, present, and future sin and struggles. But the Word tells us that there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). Yes, we have messed up, and we will continue to mess up, because we are human. But our goal is not to please man, or even to please ourselves. Our goal is to please the one who made us and loves us and knows us with an intimacy deeper than we can imagine or fathom. And that, my friends, is good news. 

He loves us. 
He loves me. 
He loves you! 

And He is longing to be known and loved right back. The God of the universe wants us to know Him in the way that He knows us. With deep intimacy and a passion that burns within and then touches every aspect of our lives- internally and externally. The knowledge of His love is worth running back to town and telling everyone about. The Samaritan woman was surprised at the depth in which Jesus knew her, and that is why she told everyone about Him. And yet He loved her. Without condemnation. This kind of love, without condemnation and fear, is what changed her life, and consequently, the lives of an entire village of people!

So often, I find myself thinking, planning, and dreaming about things that I want for the future. These things are not bad or evil in and of themselves, but when I place them on a sort of a pedestal, I am making my own golden calf, hoping for some kind of fulfillment from something or someone apart from the living God

The life He gives is abundant. The water He gives is living water, which enables us to worship Him in spirit and truth (John 4:23-24). Why keep searching when He has made Himself available to us? What could be better than living with complete reckless abandon in surrender to the awesome story which He wrote for us before time began?

There is nothing like His love. 

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