“But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.” Psalms 13:5
I believed in and rested in the love of God before Kim’s death. We all need love. Love is not only something God gives; but “…God is love…” himself (1 John 4:8). Love is a gift freely given. Love is the reason given for Jesus being sent to us by God, his Father.
“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16
“…but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
Not just loved—so loved. Salvation was offered out of God’s extravagant love for the world he created. While we were sinners. If you believe in God, you avoid perishing, and you have eternal life. Salvation born of the love of God is ours as a gift, and it is proven by his grace, mercy, and peace. Redemptive love changes everything. It is lavished upon us, and it is steadfast. Agape love. It’s based on the Giver’s love and not the loveliness of the recipient.
“… Redeeming love has been my theme and shall be till I die…“ William Cowper, There is a Fountain
The love of God is recognized and understood at salvation, but God’s love is also experienced day-by-day. It most assuredly should be our theme until we die. Like grace, mercy, and peace, we need his love. And we have his unending love. Steadfast. I repeat: steadfast. Over and over. Steadfast. Steadfast love is an oft-repeated description throughout the Bible. There’s a reason for that repeated declaration. We need to hear it.
“You have granted me life and steadfast love, and your care has preserved my spirit.” Job 10:12
“I have loved you with an everlasting love…” Jeremiah 31:3
“Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds.” Psalm 36:5
“…for his steadfast love endures forever.” Psalm 136 (26 times!)
You get the idea—lavished. Steadfast. I love Psalm 136 because in creative genius our communicating God delivers the same message twenty-six times in twenty-six verses. Not to mention all the other places it’s repeated throughout The Psalms. His lavished steadfast love endures forever. Endures. Forever. In fact, steadfast love means that his love is firmly fixed in place and is, in fact, immovable. And lavished adds luxurious, opulently rich, and elaborate to the definition. Opulent and immovable love.
“The felt love of Christ really is what brings rest, wholeness, flourishing, shalom…” Dane Ortland, Gentle and Lowly
If you allow it, loss shines a light on God’s love. Because you need it more. You recognize it more. The pain of loss strips any self-sufficiency away and you fall with your full weight of need on God’s love. If you choose to trust. He does not disappoint. Loss shows just how lavish and steadfast his love is to us.
We thank Thee, Lord, for weary days when desert springs were dry, and first we knew what depth of need Thy love could satisfy.” Frances Bevan, Companionship
Here’s my testimony: God’s love has been lavished upon me. Elaborate. Luxurious. His love is steadfast. Firmly in place. Immovable. I am loved and so are you.
“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God…” 1 John 3:1
“May the Lord direct your hearts to the love of God and to the steadfastness of Christ.” 2 Thessalonians 3:5