What’s Love Got to Do With It?
We should fear God (have reverential awe for Him) not just because of His amazing nature (see Exodus 34:6) but also because of His amazing love. We should worship, draw near, and hold on tightly to God in awe and reverence because of His amazing love for us.
The Apostle John writes in John 4:8, “He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.” Notice what it says: It says God is love. God doesn’t just love—He is love! Apart from God being love, we wouldn’t have an expression of what love is. God is love. And, because He is love, then, He loves.
So, why does God discipline us if He’s all love?
Hebrews 12:6 makes that clear. It says, “For whom the Lord loves He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives.” Here’s the deal: Even when God disciplines us, and straightens us out, it’s because He loves us! God is never interested in straightening us out just to rub our nose in our failure. He’s not up there waiting to beat us with a ball bat so He can see bruises on our back. That is not God. If that is your perception of Him, you need to get rid of it. Even in the midst of His discipline it’s because He loves us—because He is love.
What about when things go bad?
He is loving us in the midst of great personal tragedy, loss, heartache, and discomfort. You fill in the blank. God’s love for you doesn’t stop or change just because you’re going through a tragedy. Unfortunately we tend to think, “God, if you loved me there’s no way this could be happening in my life right now. I just got fired from my job that I’ve had for 20 years. My husband just walked out on me. My wife just committed adultery. God, if you were a loving God there’s no way I could have received this report that shows I have cancer in my body.”
Here’s the truth: God never stops loving us! Ever. No matter the personal tragedy we’re going through, no matter the discipline we’re going through. God is not the author of these horrible things that happen to us. God doesn’t create tragedy. We can’t blame God for the tragedy. We live in a cursed world. We live in a world that rejected God and, yet, in His unique love and in His mercy, He desires to redeem our mess—not laugh at our mess.
We have to settle this issue: God is always and only working for our good and our benefit out of His love. We need to have the revelation that Job had when he said, “Though He slay me I’m going to trust Him.” Job had the issue settled. Even though the things he was going through didn’t look good, he knew God was going to redeem them and make them good. He decided to walk with Him and love Him and trust Him. Why? Because He knew God loved him unconditionally.
When we abandon our belief that God is good in the midst of all things, we cut ourselves off from seeing His redemptive and loving hand in the situation. Don’t do that! I know you’re struggling. I know it’s hard. Stay focused on His Love.
What’s love got to do with it? EVERYTHING.