A Place Called Love

I am only now seriously learning how to settle in the circle of God’s perfect love, that new, almost uncharted territory (for me) where fears and doubts find no place. Imagine a baby in its crib, doted upon by its parents, cocooned and secure in their love. It is not doing anything to add to that love, yet, it doesn’t know how to feel afraid. Yes, that. That is the place I’m talking about.

Twelve years ago, I came to the Savior literally trembling in fear, both from my scary, undiagnosed illness and from the powerful sting of sin, as dark as adultery. I had instantly felt the loving arms of my Lord and Savior encircling me in a warm embrace, His peace dislodging much of the fear and trembling. Yet, through the years, they never completely left.

With the continued suffering of an unhealed body, it was hard to put firmly in place all the powerful words I was learning from God’s Word. It was as if the illness which refused to budge —- the symptoms that came and went, ebbing then swelling up again —- was a strong proof of my past sins, and the thought that maybe…maybe I had not repented enough? But that’s just one of the devil’s many lies. For a whole season after I received salvation, I was always on my knees confessing, weeping in repentance, and begging for complete forgiveness and deliverance. This “proof” or lie, the devil took advantage of to great extent, every now and then whispering condemnations and accusations, reminding me of what I had done, always trying to push me into that place of fear, fighting tooth and nail to put me back in bondage. Although the voice of the Holy Spirit almost always gained the upper hand in these wrestlings — fears, confusion, and doubts were never dissolved completely as long as unhealing occurred.

There is no true freedom with fear’s constant presence. On the contrary, there is seemingly a relentless battering of the spirit which eventually affects the body and aggravates the suffering — tension and pain in the muscles, restless stomach and heart, headaches, etc. Apostle John put it so accurately: Fear involves torment.

For a very long time I couldn’t quite grasp it. I had studied the Word and knew I had found the key – perfect love casts out fear – but it remained just beyond my reach, like little orbs of light dancing, ever shifting in front of me, but I was never able to capture and keep.

I read His promises and believed and trusted with all my heart, then waited in expectation. But when healing remained out of reach…the story became complicated.

At this time of my life that the Lord has opened a door to new learning, fresh freedom, and deeper spiritual maturity, I am scrambling to pick up everything I need before the door is shut again. He takes my hand in His and is gently but firmly leading me to a place I hadn’t believed I could freely enter and thrive in. I am just realizing now that our fears, when we, consciously or unconsciously, let them reign in our lives, could hinder us from entering that place the Savior beckons us to: A place called love where fear can’t reign or exist advantageously.

Fear dilutes the power of God’s Word in our lives if we let it. Unfortunately, more often than not, we do. But now, I am totally awake to what the Lord is showing me: I had let fear and doubts choke the Word, thus, I had not known how to fully establish myself in His love. I had let the devil’s lies, taking advantage of my prolonged illness and suffering, sow bitterness in me and develop skepticism to God’s promises. This had kept me in that place of want, of longing, of sadness and sighing.

The Lord calls us in love, peace, and joy. What I am doing now is reading and re-studying the Word with a clean slate, not marred by unbeliefs and doubts, skepticism, cynicism even, bitterness, resentment, or sorrow. I am re-establishing His promises in my life like it’s the first time — no prejudices or judgments based on past experiences — and resolutely erasing the impression that they had failed.

The key now is to believe the Word as it is, period. Whatever it says, receive it without doubts, period. Then let it do its work.

A Child of God

 But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name. (John 1:12)

I have received him wholeheartedly, unreservedly in my life, thus, I am now a true child of God and it’s about time that I live up to that position – He has given me the right! There are so many things to learn being a child of God, but we can start in revelling in the Father’s love as beloved sons and daughters.

The Father’s Love

Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God! (1 John 3:1)

I will behold God’s love for me and be in awe of it. I will not equate my illness and suffering, my unhealing yet (or any unanswered prayer) with God’s love. God’s love is a truth that is established forever. I believe healing starts from this place.

Perfected in Love

But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. (1 John 2:5)

I will keep His Word, believe in it even when circumstances dictate that I will doubt it. I will abide in His Word, not questioning it, more so when waves of hardships come to test. I believe it is through tenacious, steadfast, unwavering faith, unmarred by doubts, that His love is perfected in us, that His love could work powerfully in our lives.

No Place for the Devil

For if our heart condemns us, God is greater than our heart, and knows all things. (1 John 3:20)

Don’t let the devil condemn, accuse or oppress us! God and His love for us are far greater and more powerful than any lie the devil could concoct. And if we stumble that the devil has an occasion to condemn us, We have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous ( 1 John 2:1).

In our deepest need, we so long to feel God’s love wrapped around us like a warm blanket, to experience it first-hand and not just know or read about it. We desperately want His love manifested in our lives through our healing and emancipation from suffering. That will come. Our wholeness — healing of mind, heart, and body — is a part of His covenant with His children. In the meantime, we must trust His every word, every promise.

Let us end today’s message with the beautiful words of Ephesians 3:17-19. I love how the New Living Translation puts it:

Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

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Journey with Jesus,

Comments

  1. Naomi says:

    Your post reminds me of my reading today in Psalm 107:19-21 “…He sent His word and healed them…” God’s word is healing balm to the souls’ of men.

    We learn so much through affliction and yet so much remains unknown such as: why me Lord? Why so long Lord? why, why, why??? We wrestle trying to understand and fighting our battles, and it seems as if He watches and waits for us to give up and to be still trusting Him psalm 37:7 “Rest in The Lord and wait patiently.”

    The troubles we face in this very short time on earth are nothing compared to our meeting Him face to face. It will all be worth it and we will see how loving He is for allowing the pain we suffered. The best things come from the deepest pains.

    • RinaPeru says:

      “God’s word is healing balm to the souls’ of men.” ~ that is so true, Naomi! Thank you for your words that encourage and for generously contributing to the discussion.

  2. Hazel Moon says:

    I am happy you are viewing the love of Jesus in a new light and as a baby trusting that you are in His care. Conviction and Condemnation are different. Conviction is when the Holy Spirit puts His finger on something that is true in your life and you quickly repent and it is gone. Condemnation is from the enemy when he attacks your mind with thoughts of the past and about sins that are already forgiven. “Get thee hence Satan for you have no part in me.” I am glad you recognize the enemies tactics and are wise to his tricks. Thank you for sharing your inspiring and encouraging words with us here at Tell me a Story.

    • RinaPeru says:

      Thank you, dear Hazel. It is the Holy Spirit’s doing as He dwells in our hearts, giving us spiritual discernment.

  3. Lux says:

    This is beautiful and comforting to read. I really like that background music too. So soothing.

    • RinaPeru says:

      Thank you, Lux! The background music is a piano rendition of the hymn “Softly and Tenderly” performed by David Nevue :).

  4. Mary Geisen says:

    There is such beauty and yearning in your words. Thank you for the call to believe God and His truths and not just say the words that we believe. Receive God’s word and believe it! Amen! Blessed you shared this at Weekend Whispers.

    • RinaPeru says:

      I believe that’s what hard trials exactly do, Mary – to bring us to a place of hunger and yearning for the living God.

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