This morning I was reading Psalm 103 with my girls. I was struck by the vastness of Gods love. According to David the Lord forgives, redeems, satisfies and renews; is compassionate, gracious, slow to anger and abounding in love. The Lord is so full of mercy that he does not give us what we deserve but instead removes our transgressions. Only a God with a heart of love can be capable of such abundance. And whom does he bestow this abundant love to? According to Psalm 103:17-18 “But from everlasting to everlasting the Lord’s love is with those who fear him’ and his righteousness with their children’s children-with those who keep his covenant and remember to obey his precepts.”
Meditating on this Psalm I was reminded of a lesson God taught me years ago. My sweet Anna was probably around 4 years old. She had just committed a repeat offense (I can not remember the specific offense now) and once again I had to discipline her. Afterward I was outside sweeping the deck and my child came up to me. With tears in her eyes she told me that she was sorry. My heart was filled with compassion and I looked at her freckled face and blue eyes and I gently said, “Anna I know your sorry, but I don’t want anymore apologies. I want your obedience.” As soon as the word obedience slipped off my lips I was struck to the core. God used the situation with my sweet Anna to teach me an invaluable truth, one that has been engraved upon my heart since that day.
The truth is that God shows us his love by keeping his promises and we show God our love through our obedience. This obedience is not a legalistic response to an angry God, but an overflow of gratitude at the realization of His abundant love. God will always forgive when his children repent. It is in His nature and God’s nature is unchanging (see James 1:17). Our choice to obey or not will never change God’s nature but will demonstrate to him our willingness to love him enough to lay down our rights and follow him. God is full of gifts and searches the earth to give them to those who are fully committed. (See 2 Chron. 16:9)
Jesus even teaches us through his own example that “If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love.” (John 15:10)
Because Christ obediently and willingly went to the cross and died for our sins, God was able to fulfill His promise of forgiveness and eternal life. And when we obediently follow Christ’s example and root and establish ourselves in His love then we can experience the “power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ.” (Eph. 3:18)
So I ask…
Just how high is His love? “As high as the heavens are above the earth” (psalm 103:11)
Just how wide is His love? “As far as the east is from the west” (Psalm 103:12)
Just how long is His love? “From everlasting to everlasting” (Psalm 103:17)
Just how deep is His love? Deep enough to “redeem your life from the pit” and “satisfy your desires” (Psalm 103:4-5)
Let’s grab hold of this love Y’all!