Yes I know God loves me, what now?

Yes, you know God loves you but do you know what that means? Do you know what that implies? Do you understand the change that demands in your life? Yes you know God loves you, but do you understand why that should change the way you see yourself? Why that should change the way you treat others, and importantly, how you allow yourself to be treated? Yes, you know God loves you but what weight does that knowledge have in your life? Does it have the effect of a feather or that of a boulder in your every-day decisions and in your daily thoughts and choices? Yes, you know God loves you, but what now?

I had a realisation today of how familiar I have grown to that phrase: “God loves you.” I realised how it doesn’t excite me anymore or release butterflies in my stomach, but rather I just shrug and accept it, saying “Yeah, I know.” And what a pity. What a pity it is to be loved with the most inexhaustible, incomprehensible, all-encompassing love that can be, and to regard it as a common thing. I realised, though, that the root of that dismissive attitude was because, while I had a knowledge of God’s love, I didn’t quite have a practical understanding of it. So I am going to try to explain to you what that understanding, in part, should look like.

Understanding that God loves you means you understand what implications that has for how you view yourself. And how we, as humans, view ourselves determines the trajectory of our lives. The way we treat others is ultimately determined by how we first treat ourselves – which again is rooted in the view we have of ourselves. Many of us see ourselves as intrinsically worthless, or annoying, or non-interesting, or undeserving. While we may not explicitly call ourselves these things, our actions speak louder to these sentiments. How? We constantly look for ways to suppress these inner feelings. We enter relationships with people who placate our fear of not being good enough, not being interesting enough, or not being lovable enough. We use those relationships to fill an inner void we have within us, and that’s why we often feel ripped apart when they end, before embarking on a desperate search for a new one. We also entertain habits that suppress the internal feeling of not being enough in certain aspects. We drink until our livers repulse us because we have a fear of not being sociable enough, funny enough, entertaining enough, or interesting enough while we are our normal, sober selves. Our minds rather disguise this as ‘I do it to have fun’, but in truth it is a means of escapism from who we really are. We find it fun to escape who we really are; isn’t that telling? We use ethanol and its counterparts to silence these fears, which tend to come to surface when we are in social environments that make us subconsciously compare ourselves with others around us – another evidence of the fear of not being enough. Whether it’s relationships, drugs, alcohol, money, pursuit for success, or using people, we have found many ways to appease these fears. As human beings, we have adopted the ability to run from any fear for as long as we desire to, without realising the solution to the problem. And the solution is true love.

God is the most powerful being to have ever existed, presently exist, and that will ever exist. He knows all things, sees all things, and is present in all things. He has a host of angels and elders constantly bowing before Him crying aloud how worthy He is. And this isn’t to appease some sort of narcissism – it is because He genuinely is worthy. Have you ever met a person that is so amazing and great that you believe they deserve all the accolades, all the love, and all the recognition? Most of us have. Now think of that person and how great you see them, and imagine somebody who is immeasurably and infinitely greater than that. That hypothetical somebody you may have imagined reflects only a fraction of how great God is. And that, my friend, is the reason why He is worthy of being praised forever and ever and ever. And now, picture this. This person – God – the best person in all existence, is in love with you. And not simply in love with you because of how you make Him feel, as humans often do – in fact He loved you while you treated Him like dirt (“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” Romans 5:8 / “We love because he first loved us” 1 John 4:19). He loved you not because of what you did or did not do, but because of who you are. He loved you because He saw something in you that He deemed as worthy of love, no matter how you externally present yourself. He loved you that much.

God’s love for you, when you deep it, does not make sense. It is one thing for somebody to say they love you, it is another thing for them to give up their life as an act of love for you. Think of your best friend. Think of how much they love you presently, but how they might hesitate, even if only for a moment, if asked to give their life for you. But imagine that even after hesitating, they chose to do it. Imagine, though sad you may be, how loved you would feel afterwards – in understanding that someone cared for you so much that they would give up their precious life for you. Imagine how different that would make you feel about yourself. For some of you reading this, you would feel uncomfortable after an act like that, because you don’t see yourself as worthy or deserving of such kind of love. This in itself speaks to how the way we view ourselves affects every area of our life. But God doesn’t see us how we see ourselves. Unlike your best friend, He would die for you without hesitation. In fact, He did. He did it so you would understand just how deep His love is for you. His love calls you worthy. His love calls you seen. His love calls you important. His love says “I will die for you if this is the only way you will become everything you were created to be.” His love says “I will die for you if it means you understanding that your self-worth isn’t determined by that abusive boyfriend, or neglectful parent, or mean friend, but is determined by this act done for you alone.” His loves says “I see you in your entirety and you are still worth my last breath.”

God’s love towards you is everlasting. I think if we understood this love in its width and breadth, we would change the way we live our lives. We would speak kinder to ourselves. I think if we believed that the way God sees us is the only truthful representation of who we are, we would treat ourselves differently. We would believe in ourselves more. We wouldn’t look for validation in so many sources because we realise that we have already been validated in Him. Seeking validation means to seek to be affirmed that you are valid and worthy. Worthy of being listened to. Worthy of being loved. Worthy of being cared for. About you, God believes all three. When we accept and believe this, we don’t need other people to say it to us before we stand tall and strong. We can walk knowing that the one person whose opinion weighs stronger than anything in the universe has said that we are valid and important. And therefore, we are.

One thing I love about God’s love is it is so intentional, and it has action. It is not just a feeling or sentiment, but it is attached to a story. And this story is the gospel. This story is the story of how God sacrificed everything so that you may have everything. It is the story of how God loved you so exceedingly that He refused to allow anything, even your own intentional sins, to stand between you and Him. He refused to let anything, even your poorly-guided decisions, stop you from being everything that you were created and called to be. His love is affirming. His love is reassuring. And His love is life-giving.

Choose to believe in His love today.

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  1. Vanilla says:

    God bless you forever for allowing God to use u as a vessel to speak such truth!!! What a beautiful think piece

  2. Idek why I felt so nudged to read this post in particular but man I’m glad I did! The part where you mentioned about hearing that God loves us just becoming another mundane buzz word in our day-to-day lives is so sad yet so true. I hit that point where I knew He loved me but I wasn’t living like I was loved. This is some real and honest food for thought that you’ve written Aghogho. Hope anyone who reads this will be blessed and encouraged by it!

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