– Lake Kachees, Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, Washington
The entire message of the Bible is a message of grace, hope, forgiveness, and love—all unearned, ill-deserved, and completely without condition! The love of God is reckless, pervasive, and unstoppable. The love of God knows no limits or boundaries! Thus far, though billions have tried, none have been able to stop the work of God.
The love of God is not reserved for just the rich or just the poor. It is not just for straight people, Republicans, or humanitarians. The love of God cannot be confined within the walls of a local church building. The love of God is not rhetoric or wishful thinking. It cannot be shrunk down to a coffee cup or bumper sticker or cliché. The love of God does not fall asleep at the wheel but is always alive, brilliant, and blazing! God’s love is not just for the world out there, not just for the church down the street, but for little bitty you in that chair right there, right now with all of your past mistakes, all of your present skepticisms, and all of the stubborn “so what’s?” and “prove it to me’s” going on in your head right now. It is for you...
God hasn’t insisted on you getting better or trying harder in order to get into his family. If you come with empty hands, you come with all you need. God’s love isn’t fickle, moody, or affordable. It is something that must be given to you, and the only thing more offensive to God than your sin is your feeble attempt to earn his loving affection. It is free. God is for us.
Excerpt from The New Believer's Guide to the Christian Life: What Will Change, What Won't, and Why It Matters, pp.27-28.