the last in line

I was one of those kids.

The ones that bloomed late, who was gangly, all legs and not as obviously coordinated or all put together as the cooler kids.

When we were all lined up, and teams were chosen, I will almost always chosen last.

This was even before I started wearing my glasses full time, which would likely have secured last past guaranteed if it had started in public school.

The funny thing was I was a close physical copy of one of the most popular girls in my public school. I was the better at volleyball, and standing long jump. She was the most popular girl at school, and already dating the most popular guy in grade 6 when I arrived at this school.

Somehow, I accepted the lie that I would always be overlooked, or called to the team last.

This all ran though my brain at lightening speed yesterday morning during an intense moment of worship, when God spoke into my spirit, “I chose you first.”

I almost lost it completely. had it not been for His living arms embracing me as He delivered that news whammy right into my heart.

God chose me first.

Not that I am better than others, that isn’t what He meant.

He will always choose me as His first choice.

He didn’t settle when He chose me.

I was first on His mind when He went to the cross.

So were you.

This isn’t about my social status or yours, but the love He has demonstrated to each of us.

He went to the cross to show You He was putting you first.

If we were all lined up, somehow supernaturally, He would choose us all at the same time, first.

We are all His favorite.

As we all have a tendency to do, we fall into the comparison mind trap lie the enemy baits us with whenever he can.

And in a flash encounter suspended in one moment in my timeline, God broke me free from that hidden memory.

God does that kind of thing for His favorites.

You, and me!

Today, take a sec and say back to Him your gratitude for His choosing you, and that He loves you so. He has moved you to the front of the line, such is His great love for you!!!

Let Him love up on His favorite. 🙂

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Here it is again, the Great Reversal: many of the first ending up last, and the last first.
Matthew 20:16 MSG

we long to be-loved

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(image via Bonnie Gray http://www.faithbarista.com)

We all long to be loved.

We were hardwired with that longing, which was integrally woven into our design by our Designer & Creator.

For He longs for us to awaken from our slumber, and accept we are beloved.

But we are not only loved, and created to be loved.

We all long to be beloved.

That special someone to our special someone.

The treasured loved one, precious and not just wanted, but pursued with delight by our Beloved.

The truth is:
We are His beloved.

He paid His dearest to show us that love with abandon, right up to dying on that cross.

His drops of blood shed for us? They cleanse us, clothe us in the white robes of the Bride, His Beloved.

His heart beat? Beats for you.

When He sees you approach, His face glows with affection as His eyes catch yours.  He leans towards you, with wide open arms, ready to embrace you. He waits to hear what you have weighing on your mind, pressing on your heart, or have been carrying since you last got together.

But God? He doesn’t just sit there and wait for you to come.  He is proactive.

Jesus chose the cross out of His great love for us, full well knowing He would turn the world on its axis for all eternity.

He deposited His Spirit within you, so we would know we are His Beloved 24/7, wherever we go, whatever happens.

He not only loves us enough to save us, but to walk with us, moment by moment, through this life.  Actively loving us, 100% of the time.

That kind of devotion does not easily come around in this world.

And the clincher is: its yours, whenever you want it.  For all of your days, here and in heaven.

Beloved is not only our position before God, but our new name.

Today, let that truth steep into your very core.

Say it out loud, “I am His Beloved.”

Wait for God to say to you in return, “And you are Mine.”

My beloved is mine, and I am his.
Song of Solomon 2:16

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unstoppable love which never ends

I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable— absolutely nothing 
can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.

Romans 8:38-39 MSG

Nothing can separate us from. God’s love.

Ever.

Nothing.

I got a graphic glimpse of this revelation when I watched the movie The Passion of the Christ.

A love which didn’t let
pain,
sorrow,
temptation,
religion,
politics,
hard hearts,
abandonment,
betrayal
or misunderstandings
turn Him away from the path that lead Him to the cross.

A death which separated God from part of Himself, because He couldn’t stand being separated from US!

Think about that. God so loved us… part of His own family was put to death for our sin, because He couldn’t show us His love in any other way but the best- setting us free and taking back the keys to His kingdom. Demonstrating that love in a display so amazing and so powerful it ripped the separation between us forevermore!

Lavish love poured into a womb, poured out on the cross, then poured into our hearts for eternity…

What love!

We people tend to use the word love a lot in ways it was never designed for…. I love potato chips, I love that…

Love is not such an easily exchangeable word once you encounter His love.

Love comes with a price: being vulnerable before the one you love, and opening yourself up to the fact they may not love you in return.

This love God has for us? This love Jesus displayed for us? This love Holy Spirit stirs in our hearts?

God loves all of us, each and every one of us, whether we receive it or return it, always.

Imagine loving, and knowing who will love you in return.

How my heart aches knowing He loves every single person ever, died for each one, and knows that despite all His efforts to reach us with that love, some will ignore Him, brazenly break His heart with their actions and deliberate turning from Him.

No lover enjoys when someone turns away from you, changes their mind, cheats on you or abandons you.

No parent relishes the pain their kids go through when they refuse your help.

The weight of His love must be huge in its enormity, yet His love remains unstoppable in His pursuit of us all.

Once you decide to accept His love, there is nothing that can change His heart for you.

You become His, forever.

Nothing, ever, can change His love for you.

There is no place you can hide or run where His love won’t find you. He will have already run to greet you there with wide open arms.

If you are His, you will be loved by Him now and into eternity!

Once God decided humanity was in His plan, He never looked back from His love for us.

Take a moment today, and think over the cost of His love for you today.

Lent is a season of seeking Him, and historically giving up in order to see Him anew.

Give up your false belief that you are not worth His love this Lent.

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Love’s value is based on the depth of love in the heart of the giver, not the recipient.

Oh how He loves us!

You are His beloved, and He will never stop singing that love over you, showing it to you or pouring it into your heart for the rest of your life, and into the next!

#lavishlove
#hopeinHisPresence