where love is alive 

Recently we worked through a series of talks with our students on the promises of God for teenagers.  Of course, these promises aren’t just for teens, but for all of us!  There are a whole lot of promises in the Bible to us and these are just a few of the highlights.  I felt as though these were worthwhile promises to touch on in my article this week.

        The first promise I spoke about was the promise that God loves us.  It is a love that is unconditional and never ending.  It is the type of love that we strive to give to others and deeply desire from others.  There is no force in the universe that can take it away from us or keep it from us.  There is also no action that I can do or poor choice that I can make that separates me from God’s love (Romans 8).  I am thankful for God’s love in my life, and I have a deep desire for others to know this same love that I feel.  From my perspective, there is nothing more powerful in the world than the love of God.

        In Deuteronomy chapter 31 we find the second promise that I featured to our students which is the promise that God will never leave you!  Of course, this promise is woven throughout the threads of the Bible.  The promises to the Israelites that God would never leave them also apply to us.  The promises to the disciples and the people in the first century that God would always be there for them apply to us as well!  You can count on the fact that when things get tough in your life, God is still going to be there for you!  He isn’t a fair-weather fan of yours.  No, he is your biggest fan and much more than that.  Just like God’s love, there is no place you can go where God won’t go with you.  And while we know that sin does separate us from God, the example I gave the students was that of the prodigal son.  He separated himself from the father, but the father was right there waiting for him to come back.  The same holds true for us, we may walk away from God, but He won’t walk away from us and will be there for us when we are ready to come back. He is always there for you!

        Finally, we talked about how God knew us in our mother’s womb and knows everything about us (Psalm 139).  Because of this, we can count on the fact that God has a plan for our life that is a GOOD plan (Jeremiah 29).  It’s probably a plan that we could never dream up for ourselves because it is a God-sized plan, while we create human-sized plans. God’s plan will always be better than my plan, but He still allows me to make the decision of who will control my life.  Will it be me, with my simple, narrow-minded plan, OR will I allow Him, with His God-sized plans to control my life?  Seems like a simple decision but if I’m being honest, I sure do like to put my hands on that steering wheel!  God’s plan will ALWAYS be better than my plan, so I have to fight the urge to take control away from God and allow Him to work out His plan for me.

        I hope we can all “lean into” these promises of God.  They are foundational to our belief system about God and will drive us to tell people about him if we will be open to it!

                                                                                                                                -Jason

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