Season of Love

Valentines Day is this next week and in this season of Love I am reminded of the One who is Love. As the apostle John wrote, “…for God is love.” 1John 4:8

Lets face it, life is hard.  It is hard to be married.  It is hard to be a parent. It is hard to get up and face those demons in our lives that want to drag us down. It is difficult to love in the face of lies and deceit, defiance and disobedience, and arguing and silence.

But isn’t that what God does for us each and every day.  He loves us. Despite who were are and how we treat Him.

Last summer I was faced with having to address some serious issues in the life of my 19 year old son. In the midst of it God gave me a song, One Thing Remains by Jesus Culture (or Kristan Stanfill not clear to me) that clearly he wanted me to make sure my son heard. I sent it to him and even put the words to it in a photo book that I made for him.

Higher than the mountains that I face

Stronger than the power of the grave

Constant through the trial and the change

One thing remains

One thing remains

Your love never fails it never gives up it never runs out on me

The Loch RMNP 2011 DDOwen

This song became a very simple reminder to me of what is one of the most important things, I as a dad, need to teach my kids: No matter what is going on in their lives, God loves them.  We all know that guilt and shame can weigh us down so incredibly. That we don’t think anyone could love us, even God. And let’s be honest, there may be times when we really don’t like our kids because of some really bad choices they have made, for where they are in their life, or how they have treated us as parents; but we do love them.

And sometimes we need to be reminded that God loves us as well as them when we have made mistakes in parenting or in our marriage. I know that I have made more than my fair share of mistakes in both of those arenas.

But God.  Oh, how true those words have become for me.  But God so loved the world. But God so loved us, loved you, loved me.

 “For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39 (NASB)

In this passage the apostle Paul reminds us that God loves us despite anything.  We cannot hide from His love, nor can anything keep us from it.  He will chase and pursue us just to make sure that we know that He loves us.  This is such a powerful truth that we often forget.  This love for us has the ability, if we allow, to get us through the toughest of times or to do the toughest of things.

One such tough thing I had to do was to tell  my son that he had burned so many bridges that if he was to leave this last place we arranged for him, that he would be on his own.  He would begin to have to pick his own path.

Mountain Trail RMNP 2011 DDOwen

Almost a month ago now, my son found himself homeless in Ft Myers, FL because he did chose to leave that place.  I knew that he was being dropped off at a shelter and sent out a prayer request to my Bible study brothers to pray for his protection. When he found out there was no place for him at that shelter he began to walk the street with all of his bags, and as he realized later, he did not have his wallet, or ID or money.  A very scary time for him.

But God.  In what I consider a miracle of God’s pursuing love for us, He took control.  He stepped into the situation.

A short while after starting to walk along the street a gentleman stopped (a divine appointment for sure) and picked him up telling him that he was in a bad area and it was not safe for him to be there.  This man took him to a couple of other shelters.  There was no room at them either (my son later told me he was so glad there was no room).  The gentleman then remembered a church friend who ran a ministry home for guys where he took him and he was immediately welcomed and they took him in.

It became very clear to me and I think to my son that this was clearly God intervening into a life heading in the wrong direction.  God pursuing my son, why? Because He loves him. He has a greater purpose for him that none of us know and He wanted to protect him and see that he got to a safe place.

 

On and on and on it goes

It overwhelms and satisfies my soul

And I never ever have to be afraid

One thing remains

Your love never fails it never gives up it never runs out on me

In death and in life I’m confident and covered by the power of your great love

My debt is paid there’s nothing that can separate my heart from your great love

 

I am filled with awe at God’s unwavering love for us. My son, in just the last two weeks has found a home to live in, received counseling, just got a job working at a Waffle House, has gotten connected with a church and has felt God prodding him to tell his story with high school guys.

But God.  He stepped in, intervened and showed my son just how much He loves him.

Oh, that we could all grasp this wonderful truth.  That we would allow it to change who we are and how we look at others around us and even ourselves.

So in this season of love, remember God is Love and He loves you.

He is also full of grace.  But that’s a subject for another post.

God’s blessings to you all.

Doug

 

Red heart 2012 DDOwen

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