I’m gaining much insight about love and God while fostering this pregnant Corgi. Addy immediately bonded with me and lives for lap time, love, and snuggles. Although she’s a bit trepidatious initially, she shows no fear of people. Addy’s life is full of love. It’s not because I’m so good at loving, but because she soaks every bit of it up. Would I love and care for a non-responsive dog any less than Addy? Of course not, but a dog like that sometimes can’t receive that love. Did you know that we can be the same way with God? We can miss out on His best because we have difficulty seeing His love for us. This doesn’t change God’s love for us, but we can rob ourselves of His perfect, redeeming, freeing love.
8 But God clearly shows and proves His own love for us, by the fact that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.Romans 5:8
Trauma and fear block our love receptors. My mother’s dog Coco came from a traumatic environment. She didn’t want to be cuddled, or held, was terrified to be carried, and cowered when approached or spoken to. Coco must have had terrible experiences with humans; my mom only wanted to care for and lavish love on Coco. It took a couple of months of my mom’s amazing, unconditional love for her extreme fear to lessen. I’ve wanted to plead with Coco to relax and feel the abundant love my mom has to give her. We approach God with hope, but deep inside, expecting hurts, pains, scars, condemnation, and damage from our earthly experiences. We may have believed that God was a tyrant or uncaring. The judgment can be turned towards ourselves, feeling extreme guilt or unworthiness. God desires a relationship with us more than we can fathom. Let’s take some time with Him to show us areas where we’ve been robbed of His mighty love and then allow the healing to come.
There is no fear in love [dread does not exist]. But perfect (complete, full-grown) love drives out fear, because fear involves [the expectation of divine] punishment, so the one who is afraid [of God’s judgment] is not perfected in love [has not grown into a sufficient understanding of God’s love].1 John 4:18
Lord, thank You for Your kindness, goodness, and love. l no longer want to be robbed of Your love for me. There are areas of my life where I have difficulty believing in Your acceptance, goodness, grace, forgiveness, and love. I give you those big and small areas where I have trouble receiving your unconditional love and acceptance. Show me who You are, and I will let Your mighty love heal and change me. Thank You, God, for answering this prayer. Amen.
20 So he got up and came to his father. But while he was still a long way off, his father saw him and was moved with compassion for him, and ran and embraced him and kissed him.Luke 15:20