January 13, 2013

how measureless and strong

{Could we with ink the ocean fill, and were the skies of parchment made,
Were every stalk on earth a quill, and every man a scribe by trade;
To write the love of God above would drain the ocean dry;
Nor could the scroll contain the whole, though stretched from sky to sky.}
The Love Of God, a hymn

I am utterly amazed by the love of our God.

I sat struggling a while ago with letting Him satisfy and chasing worldly desires that hung before me, taunting me, begging me to want them. Satan whispered lies--my own heart whispered lies too.

I just wanted Him, so I turned to the Word, the living and active Word of God, ready for chastisement. I prepped my heart for a good scolding, looking to the Psalms. I went there thinking to find the psalms which proclaim the satisfaction God gives, describe boldly how He is all that we need.

I found those verses, but not before finding something else. See, I flipped through, reading parts of Psalms to see if I thought the declaration of God's fulfilling nature might be in there. Every psalm I read, however, spoke of one consistent idea: the steadfast love of God.

When I finally stopped flipping madly through Psalms, I simply cried in surprise and overwhelming confusion of emotion. I turned to Him for discipline, for a reprimand, for words to challenge and empower me.

All He said to me was "I love you."

In a way, His response was a challenge. In telling me this as I fought temptation, He was also saying: "Let me simply love you, child. Only then can you love Me."

A month or so later, I was facing tough doubts about who He is and I have talked about that here. The part of the story I did not tell yet was one that had not been put into perspective until recently with the help of a dear friend. Christmas Eve service was the night that my doubts fell away. Truly realizing the harsh reality of the mighty King coming to earth to be born in a filthy stable that smelled of dung, sweat, and hay, is a shocking reality. What kind of God would do this? Who would come down to this sinful, deteriorating place in such a lowly and incomprehensible way?

Him. "I am who I am" would.

 He could have easily brought me to my knees in fear of His greatness with thunder and armies of angels. Instead He came to me as a young child, born in a ramshackle room as a nobody. He reminded me of His love humbly and softly, in a way I did not deserve. I deserved to be slapped in the face, yet He whispered "my beloved" in the midst of a thousand people holding candles and singing of the dawn of redeeming grace.

Yet my humble experience does not begin to adequately describe the vast love of God. His love has been written about for years, yet still, would we take the sky and fill it with words written of ocean-ink, it would be an understatement of His love.

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