WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
DECEMBER 11, 2023
TOPIC: BE ESTABLISHED IN THE LOVE OF GOD
BY T. O. BANSO
“I am writing to all who are called to live in the love of God the Father and the care of Jesus Christ” (Jude 1 New Living Translation).
There are high moments and low moments in life but whatever happens, a child of God must be established in God’s love for him/her. He/she must never think or conclude that God doesn’t love him/her because of his/her negative experience or circumstance. Don’t ever feel unloved by God. C.S. Lewis says, “He loved us not because we are lovable, but because He is love.”
The relationship of every child of God with God must be on the foundation of His unconditional love for him/her. God is love (1 John 4:8). John 3:16 says God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
God’s love for you is not dependent on your performance or achievements. He loves you because He created you in His image (Genesis 1:26). You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Psalm 139:14). He is mindful of you (Psalms 8:4, 144:3; Hebrews 2:6). He loved you enough to send His Son, Jesus, to die for your sins.
Every child of God must operate on a foundation of the truth that God loves him/her independent of what he/she does or does not do. “In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins” (1 John 4:10 New King James Version). Romans 5:8 says God demonstrates His love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
What people call success is good, but it is not the basis of God’s love towards anyone. Failure in one’s walk with God or any assignment, including failure in a leadership position, is painful, but this will not make God not love a child of God.
This is what Paul said in Romans 8:35-37: “Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? (As the Scriptures say, ‘For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.’) No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us” (New Living Translation). Paul went further to declare his conviction that nothing could ever separate us from His love – not even death, life, angels, demons, fears for today, worries about tomorrow, powers of hell, etc.
Some Christians are ignorant of this truth. They do everything to earn His love. When they fail, they feel unloved by God. However, nobody can earn God’s love. It’s not what we do that determines whether God loves us or not. Without a proper understanding of the love of God, a child of God may end up being like the brother of the prodigal son, who was serving his father not as a son but as a slave.
Luke 15:29-30 says about this elder brother: “So he answered and said to his father, ‘Lo, these many years I have been serving you; I never transgressed your commandment at any time; and yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might make merry with my friends. But as soon as this son of yours came, who has devoured your livelihood with harlots, you killed the fatted calf for him’” (New King James Version).
Hear the reply of his father: “Son, you are always with me, and all that I have is yours” (verse 31 New King James Version). Nobody stopped him from killing any animal he might have wanted to kill but he wasn’t serving his father with the mentality of a son. His father loved him so much, and all he had was his, but unfortunately, he didn’t know.
A child of God must not have a slave’s mentality; he/she must have a son’s/daughter’s mentality. He/she must live in the love of God daily. Jude writes, “I am writing to all who have been called by God the Father, who loves you and keeps you safe in the care of Jesus Christ” (Jude 1 New Living Translation). Be established in the love of God.
If you’re established in the love of God, you’ll have no problem loving yourself or accepting yourself. By self-love, I’m not talking about selfish love, inordinate self-love, or egotism. I’m talking about appreciating who you are; appreciating the fact that God loves you.
If you don’t appreciate yourself, how can you appreciate others? Be established in the love of God for you. God loves you and you don’t have to feel inferior to anybody: whatever they have and whoever they are. Accept yourself as God has made you, with your strengths and weaknesses, and stop going around looking for people’s approval. Know that God doesn’t love others more than you.
Charles Spurgeon said, “Nothing binds me to my Lord like a strong belief in his changeless love.” At the root of the feeling of insecurity in many people is not coming to terms with the reality that God loves them. Every child of God should know that God loves him/her.
You must be conscious of the truth that God loves you. When you know this, you’ll not be bothered about what anybody does to look down on you or to put you down. God, the Almighty, loves you. It doesn’t matter if anybody doesn’t value you.
God loves you. Don’t feel inferior to anyone. Don’t become envious of anyone; otherwise, you will not enjoy the blessing God wants them to be to you. Confess to yourself positive words, words of approval: I am who I am in Christ; I am who God says I am. No matter what others think, I shall become who God says I am. Despite what I am going through now, I will fulfill God’s purpose for my life.
Walk in the consciousness that God loves you. Keep yourself in the love of God (Jude 21). You may be passing through a rough season but that doesn’t mean God doesn’t love you. The challenges you are going through do not mean that God does not love you.
If you’re not established in the truth that God loves you, you will be caught up in the web of performance – trying to earn God’s love. You’ll be looking down on yourself because others have some abilities, talents, gifts, etc. that you don’t have. But Jesus had not even performed any miracle when God said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17 New King James Version).
All He had done at that time was obedience. And that’s all God is asking you to do – not to compete with anyone. “Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all” (Ecclesiastes 12:13 New King James Version). Do what God asks you to do but let your obedience be deeply rooted in God’s love for you. Don’t listen to the lie of the devil; God loves you.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: Father, thank You for Your unconditional love for me; Thank You for loving me always. Holy Spirit, help me to be established in the love of God for me. Help me to love others also as God has loved me.
(For over 900 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit: www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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