You still matter to me… by Deborah Lassiter

Do you know with certainty that God loves you and cares for you deeply? Amid a global pandemic, many may wonder where God’s focus is, as war, unemployment, fear, depression, and doubt seem to have risen to an all-time high. At times, when it feels like you are being tossed, poked, and pressed from all sides, it becomes easier to believe that we may not really be the apple of God’s eye after all.  Nevertheless, we must remember it is this life — and the people in it — that are unfair and often cruel, not God. So, do not be deceived. Your pain, heartache, and brokenness are not God’s way of experimenting on humankind and using them as His own science project — with your life as the target for His chewy centre. No, on the contrary. The truth of the matter is, like His Son on the cross, your pain is His pain and not His joy.

Perhaps this is why John the Apostle sought to remind mankind why God’s written Word became flesh and felt the need to dwell among us (John 1:14). You see, John, who also suffered for his faith, knew all too well that he needed to encourage the many generations who find themselves lost while suffering mentally, physically and spiritually. John knew that, though we continue to cry out in despair through our personal lamentations, the Lord is indeed gracious, merciful and He is still just.

Beloved, God has ‘a love so large that it could look beyond sins and treasure the wayward people behind them. A love so powerful that it could patiently endure years of resistance, selfish pleasure-seeking, money-chasing and power-wielding. In the face of all this, God’s love says, “Even though you’re way off track, you still matter to Me!”’ (Hybels, Mittelberg, 19).

Church, what does it take to really anchor in your heart, soul, and mind how much God loves you and cares about your well-being, eternally? Those, who have accepted Jesus Christ as the authoritative Figure in their lives, see from Genesis to Revelation the Godhead never shrinks back, conceals or apologises for His harmonious purpose to reconcile, redeem and save mankind. And it is the book of Hebrews which seems to give us another detailed idea of God’s position on the matter. As disciples, we not only learn how far, wide, long and deep God’s love will go for the masses, but how far God is willing to go for you — in your personal hour of great need. Don’t you know God will never, under any circumstances, leave you nor forsake you?

Beloved, Jesus knows what loneliness feels like, therefore He will never desert you, no matter what sins you have committed.  Have you ever been rejected, discarded or abandoned? Jesus says, “Fear not, My child, because I will never let you go nor give you up.” Maybe in the midst of your crisis all your resources, opportunities, and places to lay your head have gone dry. Well, say to the enemy, “What a friend I have in Jesus, because God is faithful to His Word and He will never leave me without support!”  In Christ, you will never be hopeless, because His mercies are new every morning. All day. Every day.

It’s for these reasons, Church, that we will never be consumed by the arrows, the deadly pestilence, plagues, addictions, mental illness, poverty, loneliness, or death that seek to distort our trust, hope, and faith resting in the one, true God. On that account, have confidence and assuredness when bearing your cross. Do not lose hope, because the God you serve is also acquainted with pain and grief — a God who did not sin but took on your sin by holding Himself accountable, though He did nothing wrong.

So, if you have been questioning whether God sees and hears you… He does. You need not ponder where your help comes from, because it still comes from the Almighty God, the Maker of heaven and earth. You need not worry what will happen to you, nor ought you lose sleep stressing over how your ends will meet; where you will live, and where you will get your next meal. Rejoice, I say, rejoice for He has redeemed you. He has called you by name, because You are His (Isaiah 43). And, for those reasons, His eye will always protect and watch over the sparrow, giving you more than enough because God, our great Provider, IS always enough.

Hybels, Bill and Mittelberg, Mark – Becoming a Contagious Christian, Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids Michigan, 1994, p19

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