You aren’t worthy of God’s love.
You are a helpless sinner.
Your works don’t measure up.
You might go to Hell.
All of these things are true. God and His love are perfect; without them, we perish. The lyrics of Reckless Love come to mind: “I couldn’t earn it, and I don’t deserve it. Still, You give yourself away.” It is important, I think, to be aware of how much we need God. I am thankful that myself and most of my loved ones have experienced our insignificance in a way that cries out for the ability to depend on something greater. While the above statements are true, there is another side to the story of our place on this earth that demands a realization and reckoning of our importance as opposed to our insignificance.
I have seen and experienced the fear of honest prayer because we think we must give God our best, and we have confused a false front of righteousness with giving our best. I have seen the initial spiritual revelation of our worthlessness cement into a dormant, ever present shame that distances us from God. When the other side is forgotten while hell, total depravity, and condemnation are preached, only half of the truth is being told. And a half truth is no different than a lie.
Scripture says Jesus shared in our humanity when he came to earth (Hebrews 2:14). When preaching, Jesus gestured to His disciples and said, “Here are My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of My Father in heaven is My brother and sister and mother” (Matthew 12:49-50). We are not just His children, but adopted, chosen to be part of His family (Ephesians 1:5). Your spirit is one with His (1 Corinthians 6:17). He has made you a little lower than the angels! (Psalm 8:5).
Just to recap a small sampling of biblical truths, Jesus has been in your place, and He adopted you anyway. Male or female, you are his brother or sister. The angels allowed to dwell in the heavenly country and worship around His throne day and night are considered but a little higher than you. You might be sinful, ignorant, and unworthy, but you are also holy, righteous and redeemed. You are considered worthy by the almighty God to enter His presence and be loved unconditionally.
I don’t want anyone to feel distanced from God’s presence or deny themselves access to His wonderful gifts because they aren’t aware of how important they are in His eyes. It is both humbling and empowering when we can look at our empty hands, see what little they have to offer, and recognize what God wants to place in them if we will just come. There is no shame or condemnation in Christ; you are His prized family, and He has a house in heaven waiting just for you. More frequent than verses about doom and depravity are hosts of passages pointing back to a God who fully knows us, holds us, and says, “Yes, I want you.” Our Heavenly Father does not see us an unworthy, but holy, righteous and practically angelic once we except the open-handed gift of His love.
You are important as an individual. I especially love the verse about His thoughts for you being more numerous than grains of sand on a beach. When I got to go to a real beach outside of Texas, I grabbed one handful of sand and watched it trickle through my fingers. There must have been thousands of thoughts in that one handful. Looking out at the beach and feeling how dense yet soft the sand was under my legs, the weight of that metaphor sunk in.
You are important to Him. You. He wants to spend time with You and know the nooks and crannies of your soul. Yes, He already knows them, but He wants to know them with You and show you why you are so worthy to be loved. I hope these truths open your heart to the possibility of drawing nearer to your Father who loves you for you.
Do you ever find it hard to accept God’s love or ask anything of Him? Is there one side of the identity story that you have heard more often than the other? I would love to know about your experience and how this post resonated with you in the comments!
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