‘What the World Needs Now is Love’ is the title of a very popular song written by Burt Bacharach in 1965 and it’s certainly as true today as when it was released during the height of the Vietnam War.
What the world—and you and I-- need more than anything else-- is indeed love! We are all desperate for love, and the One Who is love—in fact, perfect love—Jesus!
Interestingly, even though the need is great, there is no lack of supply of the love that we all need. It is available to all, and without measure! However, first we need to hearof Jesus’ love for us, and secondly, we need to believe that He does indeed love us! Many people who hear of Jesus’ love for them have a hard time accepting the reality of His love for them because they are used to human love that is unlike God’s sacrificial, completely unselfish love. It can be hard to fathom how a holy God could possibly love us since we know in our hearts that we are sinners who are so undeserving of His love. Yet, it is only through faith in God and a willingness to receive Jesus as our Savior and Lord that we are connected to God, the Source of Perfect Love, Who is able to cast out all fear. (1 John 4:8;18)
It is one thing to know in our head that ”Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so”, and something altogether different to know in our hearts that He really loves me. I know that my life was radically changed when someone came up to me—someone I didn’t even know well-- and told me that he felt led by God to share with me that God loved me. I had heard about God’s love all of my growing up years, and when I was a young child before committing what I considered to be any ‘big’ sins, it was easy enough to believe that He loved me. Later—when I knew I’d done things that violated his commands-- I started doubting His love for me, and distancing myself from Him. It wasn’t until I was in my late thirties when that young man came up to me and spoke the words, “Jesus told me to tell you that He loves you”, that the revelation of God’s love for me broke through—and forever changed my life! I realizedthat He didn’t just die for the world, but that He chose to die for me; that despite my sin, He would have given His life on the cross even if I’d been the only person. It was in recognizing both my unworthiness of His love, while simultaneously believing the reality of His love that caused me to grasp the truth that I can trust the ‘Man Who died for me’ with everything in my life!
…God proves His love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans5:8 Berean Study Bible
He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Romans 8:32 ESV
The ‘ALL things’ that faith in His unfailing love has given to me, and is the gift to all who receive His love, includes freedom from fear, worry and anxiety!
When you truly trust God’s love for you, you will:
· Be able to totally trust in His faithfulness. 1 Corinthians 1:9; 2 Timothy 2:13; Thessalonians 3:3; Hebrews 10:23
· Be set free from the fear of being alone, forsaken, or abandoned (Joshua 1:9; Matthew 28:20; Hebrews 13:5)
· Be able to face ‘fearful’ situations and yet be unafraid. John 14:27; John 16:33: Romans 8:28,31-38; 1 Corinthians 10:13
· Be released from the ‘fear of man’ as you are more concerned with pleasing God. Proverbs 29: 25; Acts 5:29; Hebrews 13:6
· Be free from worry regarding the provision for your needs. Psalm 23:1; 2 Corinthians 9:8;Philippians 4:16
· Be set free from the fear that your particular situation is too big for God to handle. Luke 1:37; Matthew 19:26
· Be set free from the greatest fear of all: judgment from God, death, and hell (John 5:24; Romans 8:1-2; 1 Corinthians 15:55)
How about you? Have you ever had the revelation of God’s extravagant love for you? Has the reality of His love moved from your head to your heart, and therefore impacted how you live? If so, have you shared the truth that He IS LOVE (1Jhn 4:8) with anyone else, so that they too might have their greatest need—the need for God’s Perfect Love-- met?
Whoever confesses and acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. We have come to know [by personal observation and experience], and have believed [with deep, consistent faith] the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides continually in him. In this [union and fellowship with Him], love is completed and perfected with us, so that we may have confidence in the day of judgment [with assurance and boldness to face Him]; because as He is, so are we in this world. There is no fear in love [dread does not exist].But perfect (complete, full-grown) love drives out fear1 John 4:15-18 AMP
If you have yet to make the vital transaction between your head knowledge of God’s love to your heart, I encourage you to seek after God with your whole heart and ask Him to reveal the height, depth, width, and length of His love for you to you. (Jeremiah 29:13; Matthew 7:7). I also encourage you…listen to the Lord, and when He nudges you to go and tell someone that Jesus loves them, step out in faith and do so in love and in obedience to Him! You could be the person God uses to give them the key that will open the door for them to experience a fear free, joyous, abundant life in Christ!
Lord, give me an understanding, assurance, and deeper revelation of your love. Give me the power to understand how wide, long, high, and deep your love is for me so that I will know in my heart your extravagant, unending, unfailing love, and that I may be filled up with all the fullness of God, which is love. (Based upon Ephesians 3:14-19)
Written by Julie Van Gorp