God’s love for us is an everlasting privilege.
Our compassionate King has promised and proven His love for mankind all throughout His Word. It is a special treasure that is granted to us by His grace, but sadly is often taken for granted, whether it happens intentionally or not. God’s love is free to be experienced by everyone, but the extent that each person experiences Him depends on much he wants to know Him. Now, God and all His ways will remain a vast mystery to man until He chooses to fully reveal His glory in Heaven; but He also desires us to seek Him out of an earnest heart. While we must respect the fact that God has chosen to keep certain things a sacred secret from us, there are many wonderful aspects about God’s nature that He wants us to discover for ourselves.
First, it is important to understand that God is a Spirit and a Person, which means He has real feelings and emotions like we do. Every element of the human soul is directly modeled after God Himself, Who made man in His divine image. With that said, we must acknowledge God’s existence as a personal Being Who is more than capable of giving and receiving communication. While we realize that God is infinitely more powerful than we are, we must not forget that He wants to connect with us on an intimate, personal level. In order to achieve this level of emotional intimacy with God, we must understand Him and the nature of His heart to the best of our earthly ability.
Let’s take a look at five different ways we commonly misunderstand God:
1. We assume that He’s too busy for our problems.
This is one common misconception about God that we have all thought at one point in our lives. We think to ourselves, “God’s so busy taking care of everything going on around the world; surely He doesn’t have time to hear about my little problems today.” This might sound like overly simple reasoning, but God is GOD. He is omnipotent and omnipresent! He is infinite, and lives outside the bounds of time! It is rather foolish to think that the all-powerful Creator doesn’t have any time for us and our problems, when He took the time to give us life and a purpose.
While God has a much higher perspective than we do about our problems, that doesn’t mean He has no patience to hear about them. In fact, He WANTS us to unload ALL of our cares upon Him, because He cares about us! Surely the One Who made the human heart understands when it is carrying too much to handle. God wants us to realize that no matter how small an issue might seem to us, it’s not too small for Him to consider and provide an answer for. Because God is everywhere at the same time, that means He is always there for everyone to call on whenever they need Him. Isn’t that a wonderful, comforting thought?
2. We assume that He is impatient when we fail Him.
Here is another way we commonly misunderstand God. Every time we fail Him by sinning, whether it’s one time or repeatedly, we think that God is done with us and has no hope left in us. We tell ourselves, “Why would God ever have any use for me, when I’ll never be perfect like He is? He probably thinks I’m a lousy servant.” While it is true that we can never be perfect like God until we get to Heaven, our tendency to sin constantly doesn’t mean that God can’t use or doesn’t want to use us! God is so powerful that He is able to use us in spite of our sin! Our sin nature keeps us dependent on His mercy and grace, and reminds us that without Him we can do nothing.
Even though God desires us to repent from our chronic sins, He does not lose faith in our potential to serve Him. He is our Creator, and He knows exactly why and how He plans to use us. Sometimes the very weaknesses we have that cause us to sin can be turned around to form a specific strength to fulfill God’s purpose for us. Besides, God knows that we are frail, fallible human beings; it doesn’t surprise Him when we mess up every now and then. However, He wants to assure us that through Him, we can achieve victory in any areas, including our recurring sins. Far from impatient, God is always extremely compassionate.
3. We assume that He can’t see things the way we do.
Many people accuse God of being insensitive to their circumstances, passing judgment on His character based on the limited details they see in front of them. Even Christians do this sometimes, thinking that God has isolated Himself up in Heaven away from humanity and is oblivious to the reality of earthly suffering. However, just because God has a higher plane of perception doesn’t mean He is ignorant of how we feel. It is not only unfair, but blasphemous when we blame God by calling Him uncaring, when He has provided eternal salvation for all mankind. On the day that man sinned for the first time, God gave him His plan for redemption through His Son Jesus.
God is always with us every day, completely aware of everything we experience. He knows what we’re thinking and how we’ll emotionally respond to things happening around us. As our constant Companion, God understands our feelings completely, and knows why and how things affect us. Just because God sees the whole picture when we can’t doesn’t mean He is insensitive to how we see it. He wants to show us what steps we need to take in order to get to the next chapter. He wants us to experience His power to work miracles in our lives by bringing our emotions full circle to realizing His will. God not only sees things from our view, but also His at the same time, so He can guide us in the right direction.
4. We assume that He is never satisfied.
Many people fall into the trap of thinking they’ll never be enough for God, and plunge themselves into a vicious cycle of good works. Even though the Bible states that faith without works is dead, God doesn’t just want us because of what we can do for Him. In fact, the very best that we can do is like filthy rags in His eyes. God’s holiness is so unattainable, so incomparable, that it’s impossible to do anything that will meet His level of achievement in our own strength. However, God is satisfied with us because of the shed blood of His Son on the cross over 2,000 years ago. What God wants from us is to love Him with all our heart, soul, and mind; if we love Him completely, our actions will be more likely to please Him as well.
God sent His Son to earth as a grand gesture of His love for mankind, proving that God’s grace alone is capable of redeeming him and making him righteous. Does that mean we should just sit back and take it easy after receiving salvation? Of course not! We should always be working hard to further God’s kingdom of reclaimed souls while we have time before eternity begins. It just means that because of Jesus’ sacrifice, God is happy to embrace us as His children, no matter how imperfect we are. All He wants is our hearts’ devotion, and through Christ alone, we are good enough for Him.
5. We assume that He isn’t hurt when we ignore Him.
It’s easy to make the mistake of thinking that our lives don’t make a difference, and that God is not bothered at all when we forget our responsibility in our relationship with Him. We think to ourselves, “Oh well, I don’t feel like spending time with God today. It won’t really matter how long I stray away from Him; He’ll still be there for me tomorrow.” What a sad error it is to think this way! Just because God has thousands of angels praising Him every day doesn’t mean He doesn’t miss our presence when we stray away from Him. God gave everything He had for us when He gave us His Son Jesus to prove His love for us! He wanted our lost souls back in communion with Him so much, that sent a Part of Himself to minister unto us! How ignorant we are when we take Him for granted by forgetting to spend time with Him! It’s telling ourselves a horrible lie, that we don’t need Him.
Just as we desire to be acknowledged and respected as a person by other humans, God desires the same thing from us, but in the context of Creator and creations, Savior and souls, or Father and children. We owe Him our acknowledgment and respect as the very least thing we can give back to Him, to repay all that He’s done for us. If God made us as special, unique individuals, He desires us to talk to Him in our own special, unique way. The fact that He is infinite God doesn’t change the fact that we matter to Him. Showing our love to God by opening our hearts to Him is exactly what He wants, to share a real, loving, connected relationship with us. God has feelings too, and we deeply hurt Him when we treat Him as an impersonal, nonexistent force.
Here are God’s own Words to help us understand Him better:
1 Peter 5:7 ~ “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.”
Isaiah 57:15 ~ “For thus saith the high and lofty One that inhabiteth eternity, whose name is Holy; I dwell in the high and holy place, with him also that is of a contrite and humble spirit, to revive the spirit of the humble, and to revive the heart of the contrite ones.“
John 4:24 ~ “God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.“
Jeremiah 23:23-24 ~ “Am I a God at hand, saith the Lord, and not a God afar off? Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the Lord. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the Lord.”
Acts 17:27-28 ~ “That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.”
John 15:5 ~ “I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.”
Psalm 103:14 ~ “For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.”
2 Corinthians 12:9 ~ “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
Exodus 34:6 ~ “And the Lord passed by before him, and proclaimed, The Lord, The Lord God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth,“
Hebrews 4:15 ~ “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.“
Psalm 103:8 ~ “The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.“
Titus 3:5 ~ “Not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to his mercy he saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost;”
Jeremiah 29:11 ~ “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
Jeremiah 2:32 ~ “Can a maid forget her ornaments, or a bride her attire? yet my people have forgotten me days without number.“
Isaiah 51:12-13 ~ “I, even I, am he that comforteth you: who art thou, that thou shouldest be afraid of a man that shall die, and of the son of man which shall be made as grass;“
Deuteronomy 8:10-14 ~ “When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the Lord thy God for the good land which he hath given thee. Beware that thou forget not the Lord thy God, in not keeping his commandments, and his judgments, and his statutes, which I command thee this day: Lest when thou hast eaten and art full, and hast built goodly houses, and dwelt therein; And when thy herds and thy flocks multiply, and thy silver and thy gold is multiplied, and all that thou hast is multiplied; Then thine heart be lifted up, and thou forget the Lord thy God, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage;”
It’s time to re-evaluate how well we understand God.
I hope that this post has been an encouragement to help you see the heart of God more clearly. He wants nothing more than a real relationship with you filled with mutual understanding! The more you understand Who God really is and all His ways, you’ll find it easier to trust Him in all of life’s circumstances. Most of all, the more intimately you get to know God, the more you’ll be able to enjoy His love wrapped around you! No amount of hugs from humans can compare to the wonderful feeling of being hugged by God’s love! When you invite God to work freely in your life, you’ll open yourself up to a whole world of possibilities provided by Him. Because the privilege of God’s love is eternal, you’ll discover new things about Him day after day, forever and ever! A relationship with God never runs out of adventure and excitement! So instead of complaining that God doesn’t understand you, try understanding God more accurately, and you will surely be rewarded.
– Gloria D. Hopkins