“But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:37-39
A few months ago, I became painfully aware that I was not convinced of His Great Love.
I sat among friends who all experienced this grand, surpassing peace, knowing that no matter what happened in this life, they were fully convinced of God’s love for them. And I sat bitterly alone, knowing that while I preached His love and grace exist freely for the entire world, I kept none for myself. How could I allow myself to be loved by God when I was convinced that I was unlovable? There was no lonelier feeling.
My prayer became, “Convince me, O God. Convince me of Your Great Love. I beg you. Please convince me.” I found myself unable to enjoy the affection of others, the beauty of nature, the comfort of home, all because within my heart I did not believe God loved me.
Scrolling through old photographs on one particular day, I came coincidentally upon one of my baptism. I had seen the picture many times before but was unable to tear myself away from the image. The peaceful, joyful smile on my face as I stood drenched in the Living Water captivated me. Lyrics to a song echoed through my mind: Even when the rain falls, even when the flood starts rising, even when the storm comes…I am washed by the water.
Another thought came over me. A different Voice spoke. This happened. No matter what has happened since then, or what will happen tomorrow, THIS still happened, so nothing else matters.
I was still the same girl in the photograph. Perhaps I was still capable of the same joy and peace. I knew that on the day of my baptism there was nothing I was convinced of more than God’s love for me. Maybe I could be convinced again.
I walked into the kitchen, thoughts swirling. The Voice spoke again.
What? What’s here? I looked around. My eyes fell upon my sweet cat lounging under the table, then on my loyal dog staring up at me, her face awash with devotion. The flowers on the table, the coffee on the counter, the food I was about to enjoy. My hands flew to my mouth and tears sprang to my eyes as I slowly explored what I was discovering.
It was everywhere.
His Great Love was everywhere. In my wedding pictures, in the sunlight streaming in through the kitchen window, in the protective walls around me, in my last name. Despite the years of self-abuse, the nights I had spent in the arms of darkness, the hatred that had spewed from my lips, His Great Love was still delivering me. Every morning that I awoke in open and spacious freedom, every afternoon that I did not go home to loneliness, every night that I lay with my husband, and every moment that my heart kept beating was evidence.
And in that moment, I was convinced.Leave a Comment