(Half way through 30 Days of Thanks already!!)
My new favorite word the last few months has been LOVINGKINDNESS (or loving-kindness).
As I am reading through the Psalms right now, I find this word over and over and over: never about people, always about God. Lovingkindness: acts of kindness, motivated by love.
If you have read my blog for any amount of time, you may have heard me talk about how I grew up feeling very judged by God and others, especially when it came to church. I lived with guilt and fear – and a keen sense that I was letting everyone down. I knew God loved me in a John 3:16 kind of way (“For God so loved THE WORLD” … and I was part of THE WORLD), but I imagined He really just kind of tolerated me otherwise because I was just so pathetic.
Through about a gabillion situations, life-lessons, experiences (good and bad), realizations, and finding a PERSONAL relationship with God that was based on His character and not mine, I have slowly come to see that God really does love ME. I am feeling less of His judgment but seeing more of His lovingkindness in my life. God is not out to get me – and in fact, is out to BLESS me!! While His definition of blessings and mine sometimes differ (mine tend to focus on the material, His are more eternal), I have lived long enough and through enough to know He is working for my good and His glory.
God – at His very core – in His nature – is full of words that heal us, draw us to Him, forgive us: grace, mercy, faithful, true, just, sovereign, holy, good, eternal … and full of lovingkindness.
Today I am thankful to know Him … and that He knows me. Personally.