When we look at the news it is really easy to see the pain, devastation in the world.
There are some terrible things happening in the world and as Christians it is hard to see what is God’s heart for people that do these things. Do we serve a short-tempered angry God, or is God a loving father even to those that are evil.
I’ve been thinking about the Heart God has for people. Because as Christians it is so often the heart that God works on and changes. Maybe God wants to open our hearts up again to love.
Have you ever read the book of Hosea?
In the book of Hosea God begins to paint the beautiful picture of love. Hosea has suffered and faced rejection and God has drawn this parallel to himself and the nation of Israel’s rejection of him.
My heart is torn within me,
and my compassion overflows. (NLT)
It’s almost as if God is saying “I’m torn, because I am just and righteous, and sinless but I am merciful, and long-suffering, patient, forgiving and sympathetic. I’m torn.”
Many scholars believe this is similar to the covenant He made to Noah when He said I will not flood the earth any more.
God is still just, God is still righteous, at the end of this life because of who God is there will be a judgement, but because of this illogical and irrational love that pours out of our king, God desires that all are saved.
When God said I love the world. He meant it.
In sending His son He was saying, “I love all of you. I am sending my son not to judge the world but that the world through him might be saved.”
He is not the great critic but the great cure. He is a God of Love and His heart’s moved by His children.
There is evil adulterous behaviour in the heart of the Israelites, yet God is looking at them and saying, I chose to love. In the midst of the darkness He shows mercy. In the middle of rejection He shows forgiveness.
We need to be a people who emulate the heartbeat of our heavenly father, where mercy triumphs over judgement every time.
So what does this Heart of God look like for us
1 John 3:16-17
We know what real love is because Jesus gave up his life for us. So we also ought to give up our lives for our brothers and sisters. 17 If someone has enough money to live well and sees a brother or sister in need but shows no compassion—how can God’s love be in that person? (NLT)
I love how John just brings this home. He speaks directly into our day-to-day lives. We have just made this leap from the son of God laying down his life for us in verse 16 to if you have a bit of money and see someone in need then help.
It’s powerful stuff. He just says if that is you (that shuts up your life to those in need) then how can the love of God be in you?
I believe that through this passage we can see that God’s love is not shut up, but God’s heart is open to all. If there is a being in the universe that has a right to shut His heart to some it’s God. He would be right and just to say my heart is open to one and it’s shut to another.
But His mercy and His grace and His love push through and His heart remains open to all humanity.
John writes, He died for you, He opened his heart for you, and He gave His son for you. If you see someone in need don’t you shut your heart up.
Maybe as His ambassadors as His representatives here on this earth we could be a people of an open heart.
We need to look at the father, because He had an open heart He goes to extraordinary illogical lengths to demonstrate His love even though He knows many will not take notice. He was a God of the open heart.
What is it that you can do today that will demonstrate the open-hearted Love of God?
perform open heart surgery on us,
expand our hearts,
expand our prayers,
Help us to love the least, the last & the lost.