At the beginning of this month, I spent a week at RUF Summer Conference. The topic of our large group sermons was justification. Our speaker, James Forsyth, started the week by explaining that we have “spiritual dementia” when it comes to God’s love, and he continued to remind us of this throughout the week (Hence the word “dementia”).
My eyes opened really wide when he said this, and I was eager to soak up every word that I possibly could for the next 5 days. The main reason I was so hungry to hear this is because I have spiritual dementia, and I constantly forget the steadfast love of our God. I hate admitting that I forget things because I like to think I have a great memory, but I forget things a lot, especially the most important. I constantly forget that I already have His favor, and I forget I am fully known and deeply loved by Him.
I struggle to remember that when Jesus died on the cross and declared, “It is finished,” He really meant that “It is finished.” Sometimes I think this means “It is finished BUT…” and that “but” means I have to fill in the gap and do something in order to earn God’s love and salvation.
I think we all sometimes wrestle to believe that God really does love us. But how we wrestle is different with everybody. It is tempting to believe God will love us more if we do things such as always attending church, pray lengthy prayers, tithing, encouraging others on hard days, etc. These are all good things by themselves, but they should come from a heart that is confident of His love rather than a heart that seeks approval and love. They are not what define us or make God love us any more or less than He already does.
And the best part is, there is nothing we need to do to earn His love because He already deeply loves us and will never forget His children. He lavishes His love upon us, and He gives His grace to us as a gift.
I will have many more moments where I forget God’s steadfast love for me. My hope and prayer is that we will remember these truths in the midst of our forgetfulness:
- The love that God has for us does not change and is not based on our feelings or circumstances.
- Christ died on the cross and declared, “It is finished,” and there is nothing we can do to earn God’s love for us.
- We already have His favor.
- We are deeply loved and never forgotten by Him.
My mind keeps going back to these verses. The same verses that James reminded us of on the first night of SuCo (Summer Conference). “…So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith – that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.” (Ephesians 3:17-19)
We live in a broken and sinful world, and Satan will desperately try to tell us we are unloved, unwanted, and forgotten. My prayer is that we can remind each other of God’s steadfast love and remember these Scriptures. Let us remember that we are fully known, deeply loved, and never forgotten by our faithful God.
Question: What are some ways that you want to be reminded of God’s steadfast love? How can we encourage and remind others of this truth?