God’s Love Letter to You

Getting to Know God


Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  [Mt 11-28-29]

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Introduction: By believing God to be pure love and pure goodness, deep attachment trust takes place.  This enables you, by the Spirit, to begin to love God fully.







Knowing God is your life’s greatest relational need.


Trusting God is your life’s greatest emotional need.





Directions: The text below is inspired by  1 Corinthians 13 and framed as a personal letter from God to you.  It provides insight into who God truly is.  Through faith and through the Spirit, hear God speaking directly to you.  If a glimpse of God’s loving character strikes you, Stop!  Be still and listen!  God is speaking directly to you.  As you are being spiritually refreshed, praise God for the goodness of his character. 


Read slowly and take notes on how God, the Holy Spirit, is making you aware of the multiple facets of God’s character of pure love and pure goodness.  Then, write down your resolve to have a character like God’s knowing that you were created in God’s image and likeness; you were created to be loved by God and to love.


Prayer: O Abba, by this letter to me and by your Spirit who dwells in me, teach me who you truly are and create an unwavering belief in that truth.  Then, no matter what might befall me today or tomorrow, I will trust you and will be compelled, by the Spirit, to love you with my whole heart, mind, soul, and strength and to love my neighbor with a love like yours. 






God’s  love letter to you


Dear ______, [your name],  [Say your name in the blank.]


If I, your God, were to speak all languages of the world (and I do), but have not love for you, _____, I am not a God you want to love.  And I certainly am not a God to whom you want to listen.  I would simply be a noisy gong, a clanging cymbal, which you, _____, need to put far from your hearing.


If I, your God, have the gift of proclaiming divine truths and can fathom all mysteries and have all knowledge (and I do), but have not love for you, _____, I am not a God worth knowing.  Run from me, for I am unlovable.  Reject my teachings, _____, for I am a deadly trap.


If I, your God, have all power and can move mountains with a wink and can even raise the dead and change the events of time (and I do have this power), but have not love, tenderness and kindness in my heart for you, _____, then I am worse than no God at all.  I am terrifying and destructive of your innermost being.  You, _____, must flee from me, oppose me, and never serve me.


And even if I, your God, should become fully human like you and surrender my body to death on the cross, but am not motivated by love for you, _____, my act would be worthless and you would gain nothing.


But, I, your God, am love, pure love.  I do love.  I always love for it is my nature to love, to be merciful, and to do all in my power to bring you, ____,  home to me.


As love is patient, I, your God, am patient.  My nature is to be kind; I am pure kindness.  I am humble and not boastful.  I respect your dignity; I confirm your freedom, _____, even when you use it to hurt my heart.  I am never abrasive, nor sarcastic.  I can never be so.  Such thoughts and words are against my very nature.  Just thinking of the hurt they would cause you, _____, would sadden me.


I am never rude.  I have never been rude to you, _____, my son/daughter, not ever, not even once.  And I will never be rude to you, _____, never, not even once.  I, your God, am always considerate of all your needs.


Even when you hurt me by your sins, I am slow to act upon the hurt I receive.  I ponder the pain you cause me, see your own pain and your brokenness, and have great compassion for you, ____.  I never act off the first impulse of my anger.  I keep no record of wrongs.  I do not delight in any evil you do or any evil that befalls you, _____.


I rejoice with the truth.  I rejoice when you, _____, know the truth of WHO I AM.  That truth will break the chains that tie your heart down.  It will free your spirit to fly joyfully to me on eagle’s wings.  The Spirit is the eagle of joy.  By, with, and in the Holy Spirit, soar joyfully to me, ____.  I am the Truth.


I always protect you, _____.  I always trust.  I always hope that you will come to me with all your heart, and pursue my ways.  My ways are filled with love, goodness and truth.  And I always persevere in doing good for you, ____, and in loving you. There is no end to the pure goodness of my love. That is truth!


I AM PERFECT LOVE.  That is WHO I AM.


Once you truly believe that I AM WHO I AM–no matter what you feel–you will love and trust me, even when faithfulness requires enduring effort.  Then, my Son, the Spirit, you, _____, and I will strive together to bring all relationships into the kind, warm, and tender embrace of my humble, gentle and loving heart.





The origins of  God’ love letter to us.


The event: In 1999, as I was pondering 1 Corinthians 13:1-8 in preparation for a wedding, I was suddenly overwhelmed by what it required of me personally. The following account is how I remember what happened that day as I was pondering the Corinthian text for that wedding.


I was fifty-five years old, had seven years of postgraduate theology under my belt, thirty years of church reform work, and at the beginning of a doctoral dissertation.  As I read 1 Corinthians 13:1-8 that day, I realized that I had never even gotten close to living 1 Corinthians 13, not even for one hour of my conscious life. Therefore, I expressed wonderment to God about how he was going to get me to think and act like the Corinthians text requires.  I was not going to lower his Corinthian standard. But how much grace would God have to give me to live it constantly?


But before it became clear how God was going to do that for me, it suddenly struck me:  If God required that (1 Cor. 13:1-8) of me, a mere mortal, then indeed it could be totally expected of God.  It was logical.  I had always been taught that God is Love and Love is God.  Therefore, I said to God:  Are you not Love itself?  Therefore, the text is about who you are.  It is about the assurance I have with respect to your deepest self.


As a result of that insight, I started to interpret the text as a self-revelation of God about who God is. I listened as though God was saying it to me personally. I was stunned. When I heard Love is never rude and started to write it down, I found myself changed inside. How I changed I am not quite sure, but something changed.  As I wrote God is never rude, I personalized it:


You God were never rude to me, not ever, not even once and you will never be rude to me, never, not even once. 


That particular phrase struck me so deeply that I fell more in love with God.  I had never thought of the truth that God couldn’t be rude to me. God couldn’t because that would be against God’s nature to be Love. How could one not love such a wonderful person with such a pure and gentle character?


God became a person with whom I wanted to spend a lot of time.


Perhaps it was the first time as an adult that I felt strongly drawn to God.  God became a person with whom I would like to spend lots of time. It also made me willing to go wherever God would ask me to go. And I would go simply because of the thought that God was never rude to me and never could be rude to me. Of course, I remembered the bravado of Peter’s words before he denied Jesus three times. Only by the Spirit will I be faithful, I mused to God.  Nevertheless, the simple thought that God was never rude to me and never could be rude caused me to esteem and trust God so totally that I was ready, willing and hopeful to do more of God’s will.  And I told that to God then as I have told it to God many times since:


I will gladly do your will. I am eager to do your will.


You are the Almighty Creator and you have power over eternal life and eternal death, but that is not why I am eager to do your will. Based on that truth, I fear you and I tremble at the thought of your power.  I do thank you for that holy fear when it moves me to do your will even when I might not feel like it .  However, I have no way to relate to that truth about you other than in awe and fear. 


Yet, now I eagerly want to do your will.  I want to do it because you are never rude to me, you are always patient with me, you have always hoped in me, and you always will.  I can relate to that truth about you and I am humbled that I do so little for you and that my character is so little like your character. 


Yet, I have hope and hope in you because you are love and you will help me become like you.


Another pathway to the heart of God.



In humbly and slowly reading 1 Corinthians 13:1-8 as God’s  self-revelation of God’s character, I had found another path into the hidden glory of God, the true heart of God. Along the path of contemplating on that text, I fell more in love with God as an adult. It was an awesome and an emotional experience. 


Through reflection upon that experience, I have come to believe that knowing God is our life’s greatest knowledge need and that trusting God is our life’s greatest emotional need.  By believing God’s heart to be pure love and pure goodness, deep attachment trust takes place. This enabled and continues to enable me, by the Spirit, to begin ever anew to love God more fully.


My hope for you and my prayer is that the above text–letter from God—moves you toward knowing and loving God’s inner goodness. May it open you–through your faith–to participate in the inner life of Father, Son and Holy Spirit as Jesus prayed at the Last Supper [Jn 17].  


Blessings and wisdom,


Edward


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The greatest source of peace, joy, enthusiasm, generosity, and love, and consequently, the greatest cure for worry, depression, greed

and hatred IS  knowing and believing with wavering that God truly is who God says God is in the Scriptures!