I grew up greatly influenced by rejection in my life. The rejection made me feel unlovable, and inferior. As I got older, I just wanted people to like me; and I tried many things to prove my worth as a friend.
After my salvation experience, some of those feelings carried over into my relationship with God. I felt I needed to prove my worth to Him, as well as to myself.
As a minister, I tried to inspire people to follow me and to believe in me. This often resulted in frustration, and sometimes hurt and anger.
But a complete change happened when I found out that God loved me with no conditions, no requirements, and no exceptions. I found what I, and all humans, are truly looking for. It is found in God’s perfect love for us, individually.
It filled every empty place of lack that had been within me. I no longer needed validation, acceptance, or approval from anyone else. I had it from the One who knew me best. My life became full from the inside.
“But Someone else is also testifying about me, and I assure you that everything he says about me is true.” – John 5:32 NLT
Now it doesn’t matter if people believe in me. I believe in them. If they don’t love me, I still can have love for them, because I’m fully loved in a big way. What a powerful thing this Love of God is! It’s amazing how it changes our behavior. It allows us to lead by Love, rather than our needs, which seem so small in comparison.
What does the gospel tell us? What does grace tell us? It tells us that God loves us and wanted to be with us, the most simple and powerful truth of all.