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Feasting on the Love of God

Updated: Feb 23

February is a month that gets

us thinking about LOVE, doesn't it?

Love is a strong feeling of warm personal attachment or deep affection. Many types of human love are expressed, and we know love is revealed in actions. 


The Greeks described at least 7 types of love that exist. 

  • Eros - sexual passion 

  • Philia - deep friendship

  • Ludus - playful love

  • Agape - love for everyone

  • Pragma - longstanding love

  • Philautia - love of the self

  • Storge - family love


I have some good news! Even if you aren't a big fan of the oversized stuffed animals, dark chocolate, or the color pink that show up incessantly this month each year. 


There is one type of love that is perfect love and is accessible to each of us through simply accepting that we are in need of it. It is not based on our goodness, background, energy level, talents, wealth, attractiveness, or anything else we can bring to the table in our strength. 


This love is the love of God for us!


“He delivered me, because He delighted in me” - Psalm 18:19


God's deep affection and warm personal attachment has been offered to us. Not only that, but the way for us to access that love has been granted through the gift of Jesus, God's son. He lived the life we can never live (a perfect life) and died the death we deserve (a guiltless death). 


This pays our debt to God. The shame we are born into, that deep feeling we all have that we can never measure up, is atoned for. We can't measure up, but he can, and he did, and he GIFTS us his record of perfection. 


This incredible news frees us to love Him in return, to love others, and to live in the secure hope of a relationship with God forever, here and now, and in eternity. 


This is the gospel, and this is the love God offers to each and every one of us.


I love how Ephesians 2:4–7 puts it...


But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace, you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.


Did you see that? The character and love of God grants us grace in order to show us the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness! It's the love we dream of, isn't it?


I work as a biblical counselor, and I am struck again and again by the way that the love of God transforms people, their relationships, and therefore, their lives. 


In light of that, I want to take a few minutes for us to explore this love and then look more deeply at what keeps us from feasting on this love every day of our lives.


What do we know is true about the love of God?

The love of God is everlasting. He is not leaving. He is committed to staying, with deep compassion towards us.


Isaiah 54:10

For the mountains may depart and the hills be removed, but my steadfast love shall not depart from you, and my covenant of peace shall not be removed,” says the LORD, who has compassion on you.


The love of God leads to joy. Even the commands that we receive from God are a display of his love to lead us to a life full of joy and flourishing.


John 15:9–13

As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.

 

Psalm 16:11 

You make known to me the path of life; in your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore


The love of God gives us hope. Every morning, we are met with new mercy for a new day.


Lamentations 3:22–24

The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.“The LORD is my portion,” says my soul,“therefore I will hope in him.”


The love of God protects usWe heard from Katherine Wolfe at our last gathering, and she reminded us that this protection does not mean that we will not experience pain or loss but that we are protected from the ultimate danger- separation from God. We carry the promise that God will work all things together for the good of anyone who loves Him.


Psalm 84:11

For the Lord God is a sun and shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless. 


The love of God is a feast of delights. We have a God who wants to thrill His kids, as any good parent would. And there is no shortage of His ability to delight our hearts.


Psalm 36:8

They feast on the abundance of your house; you give them drink from your river of delights. 


What keeps us from feasting on this delightful love?


This is all such precious news about the love of God and yet many of us may not be sure why this love is not more significant to us in our day to day lives. There is so much that could be said about what keeps us from feasting on the love of God, but I want to suggest at least three for us to consider. Ask yourself if you can relate to any of these being barriers in your own heart.


First, I believe we don't think God will satisfy us.

We doubt that He is as good as He says He is, so we settle for distraction or numbing and avoid approaching Him, maybe in fear of being disappointed. This is such a ploy of the enemy, who, even in the garden, simply introduced doubt..." Did God really say...?" And even now, he says to us..."Is God really that good?"


The antidote to this is to "taste and see that the Lord is good" (Psalm 34:8). Tasting requires some effort, savoring, and attention. What small effort can you make to seek satisfaction in God? Is it talking to Him in prayer? Or opening His word to see what He wants to say to you? We are told in Scripture that when we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us.


Second, I think we know that the love of God is transformative, and we are afraid to be changed. 

The love of Christ does compel us to do certain things and stop doing other things at times, but let me ask you this: do you need to be compelled to kiss your toddler's cheek or eat your favorite treat? No! Certain behaviors are natural or at least logical choices when you love something or someone. And yes, there will be times when our desires will bump up against God's loving commands that exist for our ultimate flourishing, but remember that all love requires sacrifice, and every one of us would say there is no comparison to the benefit that is received.


Third, I'm not sure that we believe that God loves us the way that He tells us He does. 

If you know someone delights in you, you are drawn to them. So consider today if you need God to help you believe that you are His treasure. There is nothing you can do to make Him love you more and nothing you have done that makes Him love you less. He set His love on you, and your role is to receive it.


I hope you will take a moment to reflect on God's love for you and ask Him to take you deeper into the height, depth, width, and breadth of this powerful free gift.

 

Feast Together exists to connect women like you to the love of God and the subsequent love that comes from connection with others around the hope of this great love for us. We want to help set the table for you to feast on the goodness and love of God. There is so much waiting for you! 

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Lauren,


Thank you so much for taking the time to share about all the ways God loves us. He is truly amazing, The part about we are afraid to be changed, resonates with me in such a deep way.

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