Friday, June 25, 2010

Perfect Love for Imperfect Me

I had it going on (or at least I thought I did)! I was part of the youth leadership team at my youth group. I was a good student. I was involved in the elite music groups at school; even sang solos in church! I ran on the cross country team. I didn’t get in trouble or hang out with those who did. I had it going on – or did I?

I wonder if any of you are like that too. On the outside, do you appear to have it all together, but on the inside you really don’t. Every day you feel like you have to perform a certain way to keep up with the expectations of parents, teachers, coaches, and friends when all the while inside things are not quite the way that they seem. Maybe we believe that no one knows what we are really like; they don’t get us. They just see the exterior “show.” Well, I knew what was on the inside. I remember every few weeks, I would hear the sermon preached in church, take a look at my life and think that I needed to give my life to Jesus again. Surely when He looked at me, He felt disappointed in me.

The really cool thing about Jesus it that he knows it all, the stuff others see and the stuff they don’t see. He knows and he still loves every part of us – inside and out. Even when we make bad decisions, things we are ashamed of; things we would be mortified if our parents found out about, he knows and it doesn’t change the way he feels about us. It doesn’t erase his love for you!

“One of the lies I struggle with is that I am who I am based on what I do. Drawing closer to Him has helped me to realize that it is ok if I am not good at everything! Mariah, age 14

Grab your Bible and check out Psalm 139:1 – 18. Psalms is the book of the Bible found almost right smack in the middle. Once you find it, I want you to read these verses out loud so that you can hear what Jesus is saying to you! I know it is kind of long and you’ll feel weird, but go ahead! It’s really important for you to hear this truth as you read it out loud.

“O Lord, you have searched me and you know me. You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord. You hem me in – behind and before; you have laid your hand upon me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, too lofty for me to attain. Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me; your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you. For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. How precious to me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you.” Psalm 139: 1 –18 NIV

Did you read that? Did you read that Jesus loves every part of you? Maybe you’ve heard the saying “love is blind”? Well this love isn’t! He has searched you. He knows you. He knows everything you do, everything you’ve done and everything you are going to do. Does any of it change the way he feels about you? No! Where can you flee from his presence? No where!

My friend, please know today that he is crazy for you. No matter what you've done or what is going on in your heart, it doesn't change the way he feels about you. Sure, there may be some changes to be made; big changes in fact. Just know, that he is right there loving you as you the two of you work through those changes together!

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