Medicine Lodge, Kansas's Locally Owned And Operated Newspaper


Opinion / Religion - August 3, 2015


Minister’s Minutes
By Paul Stephens
United Methodist Church
You are a person God loves.
In fact, that is your truest identity.1
“One whom God loves” – That’s you! That’s who you are.
We are encouraged, or I should say, dis-couraged, to believe all kinds of other things about ourselves or about God, but the reality is, we are ones whom God loves – every one of us.
We tend to think God loves “good people,” and well, we know we haven’t really been that good, so we buy into the lie that says, “God couldn’t really love me. Not me.”
Or, we know that the world loves winners, and well, we’re not exactly “winning at life” right now (or maybe never have), and so we think and feel, “God doesn’t love me.”
But both of those are lies that want to draw us away from our core identity: We are people who are loved by God – every one of us.
Brennan Manning, in his book, Abba’s Child (p.22), says that God loves us as we really are, not as we think we should be. (Nor as we wish we could be, nor as we might one day become). God loves us as we really are – right now. Warts and all, losses and all, failures and all - even sins and all.
Jesus said that prostitutes and hated tax collectors were entering into the kingdom of God ahead of the supposedly righteous. Why? Because they were beginning to believe that God really did love them, and they were moving toward God (Matthew 21:31-32).
I am glad to be in Medicine Lodge, and I invite every one of you to come and visit any of the churches in town and grow in knowing and living in your truest identity...
You are one who is loved by God!
1 – This devotional is based on parts of the book, Abba’s Child, by Brennan Manning, NavPress, Colorado Springs, CO, 2002.

 

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