Dear Presby Family: God Loves You Just The Way You Are

How many of us have ever been in a discussion where we have heard someone say something along the lines of, “Sure, I'm not perfect, but God loves and accepts me just the way I am”? Or, “God will never love you less than He does right now”? Ironically, variations of those themes might be something we have shared with others as a form of comfort.

Taken at face value, they are true statements. John 3:16 and 1 John 4:7-12 remind us, “God so loved us,” and “God is love.” Of course, if that were the whole story, that would fall drastically short. If we were to read the rest of the verses, we’d find that “God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16) Or “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” (1 John 4:9-10)

If all we do is take the first part of those verses, all we hear is, "Because God is love, He loves us just the way we are.” However, in doing so, we miss the second part, which is equally as important (if not moreso). God’s love extends to us as sinners in need of a Savior. “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8). That is true love!

For any of us (or anyone we know) who is like the Prodigal son, all of our running and rejecting doesn’t stop our Father from loving us. When we come to our senses and come back, our loving Father is scanning the horizon and running to us. Why? Because God loves us!

Grace & Peace,
Pastor Aaron

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