January 7

The Lord is good to all, and his compassion is over all that he made. Psalm 145:9

Since God loved us so much, we also ought to love one another. 1 John 4:11

In the world around us, people are loved on the basis of their performance. Athletes, actors, musicians, we love them for what they provide for us, their performance. When someone pleases us, when someone stimulates us, we appreciate what they do and use the term “love” to describe our response.

But God’s love is not based on our performance! God’s love, instead, is unconditional.

When Christ died for us, was he responding to something good in our performance? No, Christ died for ordinary folks like us, not for people who look like they have it all together.

So why did God love us? We are not lovable people. But despite our problems it was God’s pleasure; it was God’s will to us to be adopted as his sons and daughters. God’s love has nothing to do with our goodness; God’s love has nothing to do with our performance. God’s love is unconditional. 

Now I don’t know about you, but to me this truth is tremendously freeing. I don’t have to look over my shoulder all the time, wondering if God is going to abandon me because I blew it. I don’t have to worry that God might change his mind about me because of my poor performance. God already knows the worst about me — and he chose to love me! God’s love is unconditional — delight in that statement. How cool is that?

Compassionate Father, thank you for being the foundation of my life and faith. Your love has affirmed and sustained me each day of my life. I rejoice in knowing that it is your that has allowed me to love others. Help me to share your goodness with others today by affirming and encouraging them. Amen.


Susan Hanson