GOD LIKES YOU
“God likes you,’ sounds different than, “God loves you.” Sometimes people say they love us but we know they don’t like us. So, hearing that God loves us may not feel very good and may not convey how much God actually likes us.
God does like us because he himself designed us. As the bumper sticker affirms, “God don’t make no junk!”
We discover how likable we are to God when we read King David’s praise. He writes to God, “Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother’s womb…You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, The days of my life all prepared before I’d even lived one day. Your thoughts—how rare, how beautiful! God, I’ll never comprehend them!” (Psalm 139:13–17, The Message)
Still we wonder if we are likable to God or people. Like that famous ballad, “Don’t Know Much,” laments, “Look at this face, I know the years are showing. Look at this life, I still don’t know where it’s going. Look at these eyes, they never seen what matters. Look at these dreams, so beaten and so battered.”
The point is we may believe God loves us, yet remain uncertain that he actually likes us. I was struggling the other day and asked the Lord how in the world he could actually like me. I’ve lived with myself long enough to wonder if I’m likable, based on the things I’ve said, done, or failed to do.
I wrote to the Lord, “Thank you that you are here and like me. But truly, I can’t see why you do.”
The Lord kindly responded, “John, we (the Father, Son and Holy Spirit were communicating as One) made you and designed you to be you, so we like you very much. You have always been creative, adventuresome, and relational and that’s exciting for us. You bring us to others through those traits. We liked you when you were little and, now, we like you, even more, if that’s possible, as you have opened up to our “like” and love.”
Hearing that cheers me up! I remember myself as that little four year old boy they were referring to. I realize that, in spite of my human track record, where everything hasn’t gone as I planned or hoped, I am still that boy in my heart of hearts. I am still creative, adventuresome, and relational at my core like when I first started out in this world as that little boy. God knows exactly what he is doing. Those negative thoughts against myself come, not from God, but from the darkness that seeks to darken our hearts against God.
The Gospel assures us, “There is not one single bit of condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus,” and, “God sent not his son to condemn the world but that the world through him might be saved.” (Romans 8:1; John 3:17) Thankfully, dark judgment melts away in the light, love, and like of God through Christ Jesus.
John Parker, is a pastor and teacher at Chowchilla Simple Church 10 AM Sundays at Carty Center, 609 W. Robertson Boulevard. Information: (209) 564-7201.