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August 2, 2023

Our world is full of judgment and condemnation. Cable news and social media are two easy examples. But there are others closer to home. Sadly, this could be your parents, friends, or even spiritual leaders.

Here’s the worst part about that… all that judgment and condemnation can wrongly creep into the way you see God and the way YOU THINK He sees you. I like the often-used phrase by Christian author and preacher, Steve Brown, when he says, “God’s not mad at you.”

Is that a phrase that’s hard for you to believe? Thankfully, it fits quite well with John 3:16-17, “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.”

God’s love goes beyond human comprehension because He doesn’t give us what we deserve; it is unconditional, all-encompassing, and without limits. Do you need proof? The ultimate display of this love is found in the sacrificial act of sending His Son, Jesus Christ, to redeem humanity from sin and reunite them to Himself.

God didn’t come to rescue us from our sin with a scowl on His face or with a look of disgust as He washes us white as snow. It is His joy to rescue and redeem us. Like the Bible stories of the one lost sheep or the prodigal son – He pursues us and welcomes us home.

If you want to see Him correctly, think on the way the Bible describes His longsuffering nature, His willingness to wait patiently for us to turn to Him, and His desire to extend forgiveness and redemption. He is the good Father that we dream dads should be. He is the model for all loving fathers. And through the pathway of Jesus’s redeeming sacrifice, we can approach Him knowing He loves us more than any other.

You may be thinking, “Yeah, but you don’t know me.” Thankfully, God’s mercy knows no bounds. It is readily available to anyone who seeks it genuinely. No matter what we have done or how far we may have strayed, God’s mercy offers a fresh start and a chance for ongoing transformation as we learn and live His perfect will by His Spirit at work in us.

Many struggle to accept God’s love, feeling unworthy or burdened by their past – judged and condemned. However, God’s love is freely given, not earned by your good behavior.

What if today you open your heart to the real God of the Bible? The one who isn’t mad, but instead wants to give you a long embrace. An embrace that makes your heart melt. The kind that makes a grown-up cry like they’re eight years old again because you finally feel safe, loved, and accepted.

Find a room to be alone with God. Physically open your arms and ask God to love you with His perfect love as you praise Him for Jesus’s atoning sacrifice on your behalf. Sit in that love. Offer thanksgiving for it. Let it transform you.

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Jason and his wife DeAnne have 3 kids and have called the River Region home most of their lives. A former Family & Student Minister who, together with DeAnne, launched KeepSharing LLC to publish local family and faith resources across Alabama and the Florida Panhandle.

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