NEWSFLASH: God loves you.  Next newsflash: it doesn’t matter if you can’t accept it.

I’ve been asking myself over the past few days what I need in order to really accept God’s love for me.  Now let me say before the comments start flying that I don’t have a problem at all believe that I am personally loved and accepted by the LORD and that He so loved me that He sent His only son to die for me.  I got it.  I believe it and it forms a key cornerstone of my life.

But I think of it as kind of…out there.  You know?  As if God’s love for me isn’t something I can actually feel, receive, absorb and rest in even though I know that’s what it is.  It’s a curious circumstance of human life that we can be loved and yet not receive love.  Now this is an important part here.  If you would like to read more about love and loving God and others there are list of posts at the bottom you can check out.  I deliberately left the title out of each the links because I thought it would be more fun that way to just see where you end up.  But for now, the question at hand is, “how do you accept and live in God’s gracious love?”

Ask yourself what’s stopping you. Sometimes there are things in our lives that just make it hard to do stuff.  Just ask my wife, she’ll tell you all the things that are wrong with me…well hopefully not ALL of them but you understand what I’m saying.  We all have problems and circumstances that might make it difficult to accept love from another person.  It might be anything from clinical depression to simply focusing on the wrong things.  For myself I’ve felt the need to prove that I’m worth it (whatever “it” may be) and it has made it impossible to recieve God’s love because the simple truth is that nothing I do can make me worth it but for the grace of God that says “I knit you in your mother’s womb,” and “I called you before you were born.”  So what’s holding you back?

What’s the central point in your life? Is God present there? Special thanks to Third Option Men and Jerry Godsey for this one.  What is the most important thing in your life?  Where is your focus?  Is God present in that aspect of your life?  The simple truth here is that if you don’t allow Jesus to enter and participate the space of time where you spend the most time and energy then it is harder to open yourself up to Him.  The point here is intimacy but don’t think of intimacy as a nice glass of wine with dinner and your favorite people after a hard day’s work, think of it as constant and covenantal relationship through everything no matter the road.

Do you want to be loved? Dumb question right?  But seriously, if you’re like me and you’re sitting around asking yourself these questions starting with “am I able to actually receive God’s love?” then this is an important one to ask as well.  And not just in terms of Christological manifestation (…actually not sure if that’s the right phrase but it sounds impressive no?) but in plain every day ways.  Do you want to be loved?  There are people among whom I once counted myself who had no interest in having anyone get that close.  There are people among whom I now count myself who are genuinely afraid of letting people in for no apparent reason.  Well, do you want to be loved?

Links for fun