God’s Long Lasting Love

“If we have a greater understanding of how much God loves us, we are going to have a greater and greater love for him in return. It is a natural response, an authentic movement of a heart to endear someone whom they know genuinely endears them.”

These words flowed from a place in my heart God had been stirring for a while. I just wanted to love Him more. I just wanted my family to love him more and more everyday. Then Jesus dawned it on me: “They need to understand more and more how much I love them Amy, and then they will love me more and more. Then you will love me more and more.”

So that became my starting prayer. That is the pinnacle of the “Love Letters” study I wrote. That is the goal of my life. My determined purpose. To know Him, to know His love more and more everyday, and for those around me to know it. It changes everything.

This ever increasing knowledge of His love especially changes your love for Him. You can’t help but love Him more as you greater understand this love that is so great, it is IMMEASURABLE. It’s lengths cannot be measured. But it can be contrasted. It can be studied according to His Word.

Today we are let’s consider  how long God’s love is for us, as we consider how long he will walk among us. This morning I read this chapter, and thought about it all day. All day while I homeschooled my kids, ran them to their different extracurricular activities, grocery shopped with all 3 of them in tow, and cooked them dinner.

The thing God kept reminding me was: He was there among us, in our midst during all of this everyday stuff.

He was there this morning when I felt like taking a day off the daily grind. (Thankfully I persevered 🙂

He was there when I wanted to ask my daughter how she couldn’t remember how to add her simple addition problems.

He was there when I wanted to yell at their bickering, helping me take a deep breath instead and kindly direct them to “pick out of the get along jar.”

He was there when I went over budget at the grocery store and helped me swallow my mistake with a gulp of grace for myself.

He was there when my daughter spilt milk all over my husband.

He was there in the fun times when we were writing out scripture together and smiling.

He was there when we were sitting around the table for dinner, laughing and joking.

(As you can see, my day got progressively better:)

The point is, He was walking among us every step today, seeing the good, bad and the UGLY. And he was loving us every single second.

Practice being aware of His loving presence!

Leviticus 26

9“I will look favorably upon you, making you fertile and multiplying your people. And I will fulfill my covenant with you.

10You will have such a surplus of crops that you will need to clear out the old grain to make room for the new harvest!

11I will live among you, and I will not despise you.

12I will walk among you; I will be your God, and you will be my people.

13I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt so you would no longer be their slaves. I broke the yoke of slavery from your neck so you can walk with your heads held high.

<<<<Walk in His Love with your heads held high>>>>

Keep journeying on in God’s love for you through “The Love Letters” bible study, available here: The Love Letters

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God’s Love is Wider Than East to West


How Wide is God’s Love? Is it wide enough to cover all my sin?

Is it broad enough to encircle all my insecurities and idols?

Does it reach far enough around to hold on to me when I’m puffed up with pride?

Let’s focus in on a passage that mentions the the latitudinal measurement of the earth, from the east to the west.

Psalm 103:12-18

12 He has removed our sins as far from us
as the east is from the west.
13 The Lord is like a father to his children,
tender and compassionate to those who fear him.
14 For he knows how weak we are;
he remembers we are only dust.
15 Our days on earth are like grass;
like wildflowers, we bloom and die.
16 The wind blows, and we are gone—
as though we had never been here.
17 But the love of the Lord remains forever
with those who fear him.
His salvation extends to the children’s children
18 of those who are faithful to his covenant,
of those who obey his commandments!

When I want to the Lord this morning and asked him to rid my heart of the things that were on his throne there I really thought about verse 12 the rest for the next few hours. What does “as far as the east is from the west” really mean?

As I mediated on it, the Lord showed me a few things. For one, he couldn’t sit on his throne because something else was there already. Something else had taken his place in my heart.  Have you ever sad down on a chair without looking and sat right top of something. Ouch. Not really the experience anyone, especially the King of Kings is expecting int he heart of his daughter.

So I asked him to help me take that thing off his throne chair! I want him and him alone to be seated at the proper position in my heart. King. In charge. Calling the shots. Me- coming before him and bowing, as a servant, ready to receive her orders.

So as I thought about the opposite directions of the east from the west, I thought about turning around, repenting, REFOCUSING 🙂 if you will. I can’t keep going east with Jesus and go west on my own. IT ITSN’T POSSIBLE. Have you ever had a compass in the woods and gone both ways, east and west at the same time? No!

His love is wide enough. Wider than we can fathom. We could go off wandering on our own every single morning. Headed due west, all by ourselves. But his love is wide enough. He would walk all the way to California every single time we strayed and bring us back home to North Carolina (best state there is:)!

And he would ask us before we started walking back to NC,

“Are you ready to come back with me? Good, now, leave that heavy back sack of sin right there. Just drop it on the ground. I already paid your punishment for you to just leave it there. Doesn’t that feel better? Now, come, follow me the road home.

Ya’ll should try that today. Give him your heavy backpack in the West and head East with Jesus.

Here is a little gift to help us all hide His word in our hearts this month: heart shaped weekly memory verse cards for the passage we are memorizing together, 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. Print out 1 or a few copies and post them on your bathroom mirror, your car dashboard, your kitchen window, your computer screen. Wherever! His Word is transforming!

Download Here: Love Letters from God Memory Verses

Here’s an amazing song I love with lyrics that encompass God’s wide love for us:

God’s Love Runs Deep

“She kept a low profile, but she didn’t have anybody fooled…”

This is what the resource officer from my high school told my husband when we ran into him at a restaurant a few years ago.

And it was spot on.

My teenage years were definitely my darkest, as most would also agree. Like the officer from my high school said, I didn’t get into big trouble, but I wasn’t the leader of the youth group at church either. And truth be told, I was way more screwed up than that description even alludes to.

I will spare the details of my sin for my mama’s sake, but I will say I was far away from God. I questioned the truth I had professed to believe when I went forward at the little Baptist church when I was eleven to receive Christ. I can still hear the choir singing “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus” holding their hymnals now. I can still feel the lump in my throat and the release of burning tears on my cheeks.

But then, I walked away. Far away, searching for the love I already had.

But He was there the whole time.

Romans 5:6-8
“When we were utterly helpless, Christ came at just the right time and died for us sinners. 7 Now, most people would not be willing to die for an upright person, though someone might perhaps be willing to die for a person who is especially good. 8 But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.”

He was there, in the deep, dark days of sin. Of lies, of empty relationships based on lust instead of love, and in the pitch black moments I found myself in and wondered, feeling like I was having an out of body experience, looking in at my situation asking myself,

“How on earth did I end up HERE?”

But it was then at my most shameful moment,

That he let them spit in his face.

That he endured the whips with hooks on the end, pulling out his skin.

That he felt the thorns push through his scalp.

That he followed through in obedience as the nails were hammered through his wrists into the wood.

He sees the whole span of time, and he saw me at my darkest, most shameful moment and at that moment in history when he took his last breath,

And He loved me.

And He loved you.

When we were utterly helpless, at our

darkest.

His love still meets us in our everyday lowest points. He beacons us, calling us back to him in love. Remembering how he loved us at our darkest helps us stay living in his light.

God’s Love for You Reaches High

God created you to be extraordinary, to fulfill plans you can only imagine in your wildest dreams. His love for you reaches to the heavens, and his plans for you reach that high, too.

We are going to need a confident heart, like David had in the psalm below to keep reaching for these dreams:

Psalm 57

7My heart is confident in you, O God;
my heart is confident.
No wonder I can sing your praises!
8Wake up, my heart!
Wake up, O lyre and harp!
I will wake the dawn with my song.
9I will thank you, Lord, among all the people.
I will sing your praises among the nations.
10For your unfailing love is as high as the heavens.
Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
11Be exalted, O God, above the highest heavens.
May your glory shine over all the earth.

How high does the love of God reach? Today I want to encourage all of us, his word says it reaches to the clouds.

As I prayed through this verse today, God reminded me of how BIG he is.

He reminded me to dream far up, BIG DREAMS.

He reminded me to REACH for the stars.

I want His GLORY to SHINE over all the earth.
When David pinned these words, he was hiding in the cave from King Saul. God soon sent 400 men to come and fight with him. David could have stayed hidden away, praying small prayers for God to simply keep him hidden and help him live a quiet, safe life in the wilderness.

But God had other plans.

And David knew he had a BIG GOD.

I want to look up into the sky and be reminded that His love and faithfulness are as HIGH as the heavens and REACH to the clouds.

I want to believe he has BIG PLANS for me, because he does.

And he has BIG PLANS for you, too.

Sometimes those plans seem small to us, but they have a large, immeasurable impact in God’s eyes.

After adopting our daughter from Africa, I came to remember that the day to day mothering and homemaking in my home was just as important to God as the orphan rescuing.

What dreams are God stirring in your heart? Is your motive to shine His GLORY over all the earth, and to spread his love? Then pray about it, and go for it!

Keep looking up to the heavens, remembering his high love for you reaches places you cannot imagine!

A House Built on Love

dsc_0825-edit“We’re writing scripture on the floors of all the rooms, come on in, we’ll give you a tour,” said my friend as we climbed over the gravel of their future front porch.

We walked through the raw lumber into the master bedroom.  In the middle of the room lay a bible, open to 1 Corinthians 13, a thick black sharpie, and the words “Love is patient,” handwritten on the plywood of the floor.  Soon the rest of the passage would be added with the marker, and my friends would magically love each other perfectly the whole time they lived in this house, right?

” Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud  or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged.  It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out.  Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.”  

1 Corinthians 13:4-7

If only it were that easy!  If it were, I would have my sharpie handy to write on top of my finished hardwood floors in my home to guarantee we all loved each other well.  But the truth is, God’s word doesn’t move in power unless his people actually take it to heart and do what it says.

My friends will know these words are a few layers below the carpet as they tread upon it, day after day, year after year.  They will be walking over them on days when there is laughter and lightheartedness, and on days when there is pain and heartache.  And when their feet pass over them they will remember they can only love one another with this kind of love through God’s Spirit, because this is God’s kind of love, agape. 

Some versions use the word charity.  You receive it from the Lord and then you freely give it, like you give to charities, not expecting any return except the joy of giving it.  The characteristics of God’s kind of love in the passage above show me when I’m loving the people in my own home with a human kind of love, (which happens on a daily basis).  But thankfully, there is an easy way to remember how get back to loving them with HIS LOVE.

The secret:  remember how God has loved you.  Take some moments to remember how he loved you at your worst.  Maybe even in the exact moment you know you are failing miserably at loving your family —  you just yelled at your kids, or snapped at your husband.  He is patient with you.  Ask him for forgiveness, ask your family for forgiveness, and know His love keeps no record of wrongs.  See it there on the list of all your shortcomings that was nailed to Jesus’ cross.  Now walk forward and ask him to help you love with his kind of love.

You just can’t do it without Him.  This is the kind of love only his Spirit living inside of you can produce and pour out onto those around you.  It’s heavenly.

On the Facebook group this week, I set out a challenge to memorize 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, and I challenge you to do the same.  Know the characteristics of His kind of love, so that you can recognize when you have stepped outside of His Spirit and when you are trying to love your tribe with your own humanity apart from Him.  When it happens, simply ask him to help you be controlled once again by his Spirit and see his faithfulness to respond and be strong in your weakness (or tiredness, sweet mamas!)

” But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!”

Galatians 5:22-23

*This post is the first in a series of 9 on the fruit of the Spirit.  May we press into Him and rely on His Spirit to bear this kind of fruit where it matters most — in our relationship with Him, our marriages, our mothering, and our homes.  ❤

Amy