Jeremiah 31:2-3 - This says the Lord: "The people who survived the sword found grace in the wilderness; when Israel sought for rest, the Lord appeared to him from far away. I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you."
I Peter 2:9 - But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light.
Dear God, thank You for loving me with an everlasting love, an endless love, a love like no other, a love that only You are capable of having. How often do we hear a person say, "I love you," but then at the first of trouble, they turn and run? That's not love. Love withstands all things, all torubles, all hurts, all aches, all pains. Love is forever. Love is not a term to be used loosely nor a term to take lightly. Once you say you love someone, you should expect to remain in relations or friendships with them for the long haul. Love does not run away. Love stays and says I hear you, now how can I help you? People are fickle when it comes to the word love. People do not always understand it. You clearly defined love in an entire chapter of Your message. God, although I still pray that maybe You will bring about at least a resolution between myself and Tom, I now recognize that he may never have been all he claimed to be. And that hurts. But if I really evaluate him based on the different passages of Your word that I have read through these past 18 months consecutively, he may not truly even know You. I really don't know. You have taught me so much. You have taught me that being a Christian is not easy and that being a Christ-follower will get me scorned by many. Some of those who have scorned me claim to be Christian, but they really may not be after all. I mean, if I really examine it, a real Christian will support laws that help the least of these, whether it be access to healthcare, access to food, access to clothing, access to shelter. A true Christian would never deny anyone access to those things. Jesus ate with sinners. And while I believe that anything outside of Your plan for a man and a woman is a sin, I do not believe that we should shun those who live outside of Your plan. I believe that we need to make a concerted effort to demonstrate You to them. There was a couple spotlighted this past week that said if gay marriage became legal that they would get a divorce. How does that even make sense? They will actually defy YOUR plan for marriage just because they don't support the sin? How does that help anything? Short of abuse, abandonment, neglect, and adultery, there is simply no justification for divorce. I question whether that couple really even knows You. I question whether that couple really even loves each other. Because real love does not do that. I can see where at the bottom of all those acceptable reasons for divorce, there is a lack of love. A lack of the kind of love that You have shown us. If only more people could really fall into the kind of love You show us. Thank You, God, for Your love. I saw it in a huge way this past week as You allowed us to experience release in my family. Thank You for love that is true, real, kind, patient, and everlasting. In Jesus' Name, Amen!