He brought me out into a broad place; he rescued me, because he delighted in me. Psalm 18:19
It’s amazing how God can be so intimately personal, even in a crowd.
Last year I attended a conference with a few leaders from my local church. The invitation had come in a season of tremendous weariness and doubt, following a difficult step of obedience. I knew what God had asked of me was right, but it had left my heart in pieces. I was desperate for a fresh touch from Jesus.
I found myself weeping in worship, hands raised in praise of my faithful God. So much in my life had been shaken, but I knew He could not be. And from that place of worship, the bodies around me faded away. Eyes closed, I found myself witnessing an intimate scene.
A little girl sat on the lap of her daddy, leaning back into his arms with laughter, eyes fixed adoringly on his face. My gaze followed hers, and time stood still. The way he looked at her took my breath away. Laughter twinkled in his eyes, love pouring over her with absolute delight.
I realized immediately that I was that little girl, and my Heavenly Daddy was revealing His heart. This is how He feels about me.
Oh, Beloved, do you know that your Heavenly Father delights in you?
Somehow that truth washed over me like a healing balm. Because you see, in this world of deception and brokenness, what is real and true about God has been veiled to us. The enemy of our souls would rather drive us into the ground trying to earn God’s love than allow us to open our hearts and believe we already have it.
You see, only our belief unlocks the power of His grace, Dear One. As much as we might try, we can’t earn it. We can only receive it as we believe.
I realized that day that my own faith had limits. Curiously, there was nothing I was unwilling to do for God, but I had unwittingly put limits on what I allowed Him to give. Deep down in my core, a lie lingered that it was my responsibility to earn God’s devotion, that my choices could make Him love me more or delight in me less.
But God’s reality is that He IS love. He can’t do it any less or more. His nature doesn’t change depending on our actions. He always loves fully and extravagantly, and His feelings about us don’t change.
But, Dear One, our perceptions of them do.
…but your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear. Isaiah 59:2
I’ll be honest. For years I read that Scripture to say that God hides His face from us in disappointment when we sin. But look again, dear one.
That verse says that sin hinders our ability to see Him clearly. We feel separate from Him and we can’t see His face. But in reality, any distance between a kingdom child and God is a lie. He says so.
Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? 8 If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! Psalm 139:7-8
God never leaves His children, Beloved. Even in Sheol—a dark pit of our own making—He is present with us. Wooing us. Pursuing us. Delighting in us and desiring to heal us. He doesn’t separate from us in anger or disappointment. Our iniquities simply hide Him from us, convincing us He’s far, when He is not.
Allow yourself to be the child on His lap, dear one, adored and delighted in. That truth is your reality, and it holds the power to filter grace into every aspect of your life. It can break the bondage of striving and dispel the oppressive yoke of the enemy that leaves your soul crushed and defeated. It doesn’t matter what yesterday looked like, or even this morning. Receiving that love as your own offers the grace the live differently, and to make different choices the next time.
Oh, Beloved, your sanctification isn’t your responsibility. It’s His. And it starts with believing He loves you desperately. I pray Isaiah 62:3-4 over you today.
You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of the Lord,
and a royal diadem in the hand of your God.
4 You shall no more be termed Forsaken,
and your land shall no more be termed Desolate,
but you shall be called My Delight Is in Her…
Love alone will unlock the beauty of your new name and the blessings of His promises toward you. Believe, dear one. Receive. And live your Kingdom inheritance.