The Persevering Heart

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“Jesus loves me, this I know,

For the Bible tells me so.

Little ones to Him belong,

They are weak, but He is strong.

Yes, Jesus loves me,

Yes, Jesus loves me,

Yes Jesus loves me,

The Bible tells me so.”

Love is what having a persevering heart is all about–God’s love that flows down through Christ, into our hearts, and out to each other.  “We love each other, because He first loved us,” says I John.

Parents love their children with a love that is stronger than words can describe.  It is a love that encompasses all of the tears and boo boo’s and hugs of childhood, and late night discussions and revelations of adulthood.  It comforts, it holds tightly, it soothes, and it understands.

God loves us this much, and even more–after all, He designed parenthood, and modeled the love that goes along with it.  I’ve learned lately, that just like a parent’s love, God’s love holds us, comforts us, soothes us, and understands everything we think and feel.

What I was surprised to learn, is that God loves us too much to leave us where we are.  He loves us too much to let us drown in our flawed, selfish ways.  Parents who truly love their children know when it is time to comfort, and when it is time to discipline; they know when it is time to understand and smile, and when it is time to understand and firmly teach; they know when it is time to soothe, and when it is time to push forward.  They know when it is time to make choices that are painful in the present, but needed for the future.

God loves us unconditionally, but unconditional love doesn’t mean that His love won’t sometimes feel like the sting of a thorn, as it convicts us against words that should not have been spoken, or an attitude that we shouldn’t have.  Sometimes, love feels like a freight train that runs us over in the middle of the night–if you are anything like me, there are times that it takes something that drastic to get my attention…

God loves me too much to let me drown in emotions that get a hold of me, and too much to let me fall victim to the insecurities that Satan whispers in my ear.  He teaches me.  He holds me with a firm hand that keeps me safe and pulls me closer to Him, through lessons learned and comforts given. He loves me too much not to stretch me until I have nothing to hold onto but the unseen power of the Holy Spirit.

Through all of the thorns and freight trains, I’ve learned how to have real faith.  This kind of faith is where we can find a Persevering Heart–the kind of faith that is forged in fire and softened through compassion.  With such faith, I am learning that the song text above is not just a nursery song; it is a creed for every minute of every day.

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