“Love is why God created us in the first place. We didn’t birth ourselves. God did not make us because He needed to or because He was bored or because He was lonely or because He had run out of things to do. The only reason why we are even here is because He loves us, plain and simple.” —-John Ortberg
You all know the Disney story, we learned it as children.
It’s a classic story, Gepetto the kind woodworker carves a little boy out of a lifeless block of wood. He deeply wishes he would become real and come to life. Surprisingly, his wish is actually granted! And, Pinocchio is transformed into a living, breathing, flesh and blood little boy with a independent mind of his very own.
Unfortunately, Pinocchio’s boyish ideas eventually land him into all kinds of trouble. He falls into the wrong crowd. He runs away from home. And, suddenly this sweet, little boy becomes a prodigal son. Of course, this senseless act of rebellion literally breaks his father’s heart. Gepetto weeps at night thinking about his lost boy as he experiences the painful ache of separation between himself and the child he created.
In a like manner, knowing full well that mankind would make a similar decision to choose their own way and rebel against their loving Creator, God decided to create us anyway. If we were God, there’s little chance we would do what He did. But, He knew our outcome before he knelt down, scooped up the dirt He also created and blew His living Spirit into us, shaping us and making us His final, crowning work of magnificence, even reflecting His very image. Astounding!
Yet, we know what happened. The heartbreak of humanity was the fall of mankind. However, in the midst of this terrible tragedy a miracle happened: though our feelings changed turned against our Creator—His love never wavered for us even at the very height of our treason against Him!
And, the reason why I personally believe the Bible is real and tells the truth is because of what happened next; naked and ashamed beyond words, our first father and mother stood before God guilty and condemned. To their utter and complete shock, their loving Creator gave them a promise that He would send a Redeemer, He would come to them one day, in His Son Jesus Christ, and straighten out the cataclysmic mess they caused because of their sin, not only for themselves, but you and I and all of creation. Nobody writes stories like this in Hollywood.
Because God loves us.
Guess what? He still does. You. Me. And, the rest of humanity.
Please never let the familiarity or the repetition of hearing that wonderful truth become old hat to you. Because it is only when we deeply know and appreciate His love that we are able to finally love God, our neighbor and ourselves in the most healthy, healing and holistic manner possible. And, His eternal love doesn’t just end when we die, that’s only the beginning of the very fullness of the joy of His love which we can only barely imagine on this side of heaven.
In this cold, insensitive and selfish world, this is Good News indeed, the love we can experience through Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God.
If God’s matchless, personal love for you does not move you like it once did, I pray you will go to the cross today, by prayer, and ask Jesus to help you re-experience the gift of His love for you.
God is not mad at you, He’s madly in love with you.
P.S. The revised version story of Pinocchio ends with the Fairy turning the puppet into a real boy and him and Gepetto being reunited and living happily ever after.