First of all, let’s just take a second to appreciate the sky right now at 10:00 AM.
God loves us enough to send us blue cloudless skies! How wonderful is that?!
So anyway. This week in particular has been particularly tumultuous as I have experienced a whole range of emotions, from humiliation to crippling fear to overwhelming love to peace which surpasses all understanding. It has certainly been A Week. And if I could summarize all the important messages I’ve received this week, I would say it like this: God is out to get you.
This is one of my favorite faith mantras, actually, but for some reason over this summer I’ve forgotten about the weight of those words, what they mean for all of us.
When I was younger, around middle school/early high school years, I used to think that God was out to get me in a terrible way. I was under the impression that I was a new driver on the Highway of Righteousness (which I was) and God was the angry policeman who would chase me until I pulled over, or crashed my car, or whatever, and He would point His almighty finger at me and go, “HAH! I’ve been chasing you down and tripping you up in your sins because YOU HAVE NO IDEA WHAT YOU’RE DOING! Get it right, Elizabeth! Geez, I used to know an Elizabeth who raised John the Baptist. Couldn’t you be a little more like her?”
Needless to say, at that point in my life I didn’t want to be close to God at all. I went to church regularly and heard about God’s love regularly, but I didn’t allow it to sink in because I didn’t believe it. God is love? No way. If I did everything right, maybe, God would love me, but I’m not close enough to Him for Him to actually love me.
Every once in a while, I would take my grievance to my dad and say, “I feel like God’s just out to get me!” And my dad would reply, “Yes, He certainly is.”
It took me a little while (or a long while) to get what my dad meant by this, but then it finally dawned on me:
God put all of us here on this earth forgetting what it was like in heaven. We have no memory of being with Christ before earth, but we all were. He made us. He knows the exact color of my eyes, even though I don’t quite know. As my friend Kayla put it, He knows which exact raindrops are going to hit your skin when they fall from the sky. He knows every jealous thought that I’ve ever had, He knows that I have huge knots in my back because that’s where I hold all my tension, He knows I don’t like the way my fingernails look. He knows every terrible thing about me, but yet He LOVES me. Oh, how He loves.
He brings me to Spirit-filled friends who He speaks truth to me through. He gave me good health and strong lungs and a loud laugh. He gives me comfort when I’m sad and strength to go on when I’m full of anxiety. He put me in a country where I’m free to worship Him and learn more about Him. He has loved me with a love that I can’t even understand, because it is an infinitely long love and I am a finite being, it is infinitely deep whereas my own depth perception is shallow. He didn’t want to see me spend eternity in hell, so He BOUGHT me back to heaven with His son’s BLOOD. He knows that I mess things up approximately 358923569 times a day, but that doesn’t even matter to Him because HE LOVES ME and nothing I do could make Him love me less! He loves like a husband loves his wife, a father loves his child, a teenage girl loves her best friend. A love like all of those combined.
So if He loves us all like THAT, why is He out to get us? Why would He go through all the trouble to chase us down on the Highway of Righteousness?
Pretty sure now it isn’t just to yell at us and tell us we’re doing everything wrong.
Does He chastise us to make us more holy? Yes, but the true reason He’s out to get us is because He wants to chase you, tackle you to the ground and tell you how much He loves you. How well He knows you. What a great future is ahead of you if you start walking with Him. How much He misses you, and how much He hopes to see you again in heaven. No matter where you are, or how many bad things you’ve done, or whether you even believe in Him or not, this is how He is out to get you.
Yes, God is out to get you in THAT way.
Slow down a little and let Him catch you. There is no better decision one can make in his life.