Switching gears here, I enjoyed this interview on the Crossway blog. They talk to Dane Ortlund, author of Gentle and Lowly: The Heart of Christ for Sinners and Sufferers.
The post resonated with me because I’m the kind of person who needs constant reminders of God’s love and affection for his children. I’m the kind of Christian who finds it far too easy to envision God as a stern heavenly father who is constantly correcting his flock (guess what my parenting style is like as well), rather than the sacrificial provider and nurturer that he truly is.
Ortlund does a great job of reminding us that the love of God is so much higher than what we picture on our own. More so, the conversation discusses how Christ likes us as well as loves us.
I have trouble believing both that he loves me and likes me. But I think you're right, Matt, that we do tend to not think, talk, preach, write much—or as much—about his liking us. By “liking us” I don't mean kind of indiscriminate approval of everything we do, but love communicates that he is bound to us, he's committed to us even to the point of having laid down his life for us. Liking us communicates desire, longing, affection, a desire to be in the presence of. And that's what is really hard to retain a strong sense of as we go through life and do what you just said: you go through life piling up sins and is he still attracted to me? Does he still want to be with me? And so I do think very much that we need to understand he wants us. He actually has a desire for us as sinners. He's drawn to his people. He's the friend of sinners and all the pathos that includes.
What a great reminder. This article was a blessing to me!