For 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. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
John 3:16-17 (NIV)
Take time to breathe in and through these life-changing verses. Take them one morsel of sweetness at a time and savor them.
For God so loved the world…the world He created. It says in Genesis that He looked upon the world and all that He had created and pronounced it “good.” God says this six times in Genesis one. God is love. God fully knows us and still loves us. That is a showstopper right there.
…He gave his one and only Son… I have three sons. I wouldn’t give up even one of them even on one of their worst days, and yet God sent His perfect son to earth for all the messy broken people. He simply asks that we believe. Romans 5:7 says:
“We can understand someone dying for a person worth dying for, and we can understand how someone good and noble could inspire us to selfless sacrifice.”
We are neither good nor noble. Yet we have been saved.
…that whoever believes in him… For every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. (Philippians 2:10-11) The very rocks will cry out! (Luke 19:40). I read in an advent devotional that God approached us as a gentleman. He is quiet. He is restrained. I love that. He doesn’t demand our attention. He desires our acknowledgment and our worship, but it is a choice to give it or to withhold it.
…shall not perish but have eternal life. No death. No sting. No sickness. No struggle. A life eternal in the glorified presence of our Lord and Savior. There is no night there. (Revelation 22:5) When I reflect on this dark world and further contemplate my future home in heaven my heart turns in my chest. Can it be true? This is where faith steps in. Dear Holy Spirit, assure us in our doubt!
…For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world… My heart condemns me. The world condemns me. Jesus the Lord does not condemn me. Through Him, all may be saved. I can live in my discouragement or I can live in joy casting off yesterday’s disappointments, shedding the anxiety of being enough for today, and worrying about what challenges tomorrow will bring. Living in the now of this truth…I am saved!
…but to save the world through him. Save the world. The world He created and the world that rejected the one and only true God, the world He created with His holy hands, breathed into being with His holy breathe. That world.
I love this encouragement from James:
“So, my very dear friends, don’t get thrown off course. Every desirable and beneficial gift comes out of heaven. The gifts are rivers of light cascading down from the Father of Light. There is nothing deceitful in God, nothing two-faced, nothing fickle. He brought us to life using the true Word, showing us off as the crown of all his creatures.”
James 1:16-18 (MSG)
In this season, may your heart be filled with all the goodness, the graciousness, the glory and the greatness of our gentleman God. He is the author and perfecter of our imperfect faith. Come to Him all of you who are weary and heavy-laden. He will give you rest for your souls.
Heavenly Father, we adore you. Thank you for meeting us in our brokenness. We are so grateful for the gift of your only son who you sent to save us. Your grace…a free gift that is ours for the asking…incredible…unbelievable. We seek your comfort as we often don’t feel that we can ever do enough or be enough to satisfy ourselves or those around us. That is a lie of Satan. Today, in the name of Jesus we dismiss discouragement, face down fear, and cast off anxiety. Help us remember that pleasing you is all that matters. In your great love for us, we find the motivation to love others well. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Today’s post was written by Cindy Koopmans.
Cindy is married to her college sweetheart, Brian, for 39 years. She has three grown boys, two sweet daughters-in-law and a gorgeous little grand-man named Oliver Brian. Cindy teaches fifth grade at Sorrento Elementary and serves at the Mount Dora campus as their Worship Coordinator. Cindy’s passion is music, so her happy place is on the keyboard. She also enjoys reading (so many books, so little time), thrifting, and hanging out with Kramer the wonder Bichon. You can find her on Sunday mornings worshiping at our Real Life Mount Dora campus.