Here it is the start of another year. There is hope for a fresh start, a new beginning. To do better at life than I did last year. But there are old doubts. Can I really begin again? Can God possibly love and forgive me after what I’ve done?
The simple truth is…”If God doesn’t speak to me in my darkest sin, He doesn’t speak to me at all.” Either he is a God who loves even the most vile sinner and longs for them to turn to him or he doesn’t care for any sinner and will condemn us all to hell.
His love is way beyond anything we can imagine and so we imagine his love is like ours. “Fragile, weak and conditional.”
We love those who are kind to us. God loves those who hate him.
We love those who are worthy of our love. None of us are worthy of God’s love.
We love those who we have the energy to love. God loves with a passion that takes our breath away. It is an unending wellspring of love for the people he has created for one purpose only…to love and serve Him.
And yet we put limits on the limitless God. We say, “I have gone too far. He can’t possibly forgive this offense. I have sinned too often. He will not forgive me yet again.”
But we forget that he is the good shepherd who leaves the 99 righteous persons to seek and save the lost one. (Luke 15:4-7)
We forget that he loved people like David who were guilty of sexual immorality, betrayal and murder.
We forget he loved the extremely wicked city of Ninevah enough to send a reluctant prophet to preach them the gospel. Jonah tried to get out of the assignment, but God insisted, and the entire city from least to greatest had the nerve to repent. (Jonah 3:1-10)
Such a heart of forgiveness this God has. So at the beginning of this year I bring my past failures to him. I seek His power in changing who I am. I determine to set my eyes on my only hope. The grace and forgiveness of a God who loves me in spite of who I am.