All month long I’ve been hosting #30DaysofThanks for a group of subscribers who signed up. Basically, I send out an email every day with a thought about gratitude.
I knew this project would have an effect on me, but I had no idea how much work it would take. How much focused energy I would have to put into it every single day to come up with one meaningful thing to be grateful for.
I couldn’t say, “Hey, let’s all be grateful for our dads today!” Because the truth is, some people don’t have good dads they feel grateful for. Or good health. Or a loving spouse. Or enough money to cover their bills.
Thinking like this made me contemplate the eternal things we have to be grateful for. The mercy of the father. The resting place we find in him. The way he turns all things around to teach us and make us better.
And all of these things come back to the superior Love of God. It’s the one word John used to describe God.
I know there are some of you out there who are struggling to feel that love today. I have been there. I have sat where you are sitting, grappling with deep questions about your value and your worth. Although we hear about God’s love all the time, sometimes, it’s hard to FEEL this love. This is the recurring problem of humanity–we forget easily.
Adam and Eve felt this too. As Solomon said, there’s nothing new under the sun.
When they knew they had sinned, their shame drove them to hide from God. But then the most amazing thing happened. While they sat huddling behind a tree, covering themselves with leaves and branches, scripture (Genesis 1:8) says God called out “Where are you?”
“Where are you?”
He was looking for them. Didn’t he already know what had happened? Did he really need to hear it again?
It is our human nature to hide from God. Especially when we feel things we aren’t proud of. It is our own shame and guilt and feelings of worthlessness that urge us to hide.
But one of the beautiful messages we can learn from the creation story is this: You are loved even when you can’t feel it. You are valuable even when you mess up. You were worthy of life when you were knit together in your mother’s womb.
And through it all, God is calling out to you. You may not hear him now, but if you listen, you will. If you abandon your hiding place, you will hear him call louder and louder “Where are you?”
Today I’m flooded with gratitude that God called out to me. I was only a child when my soul first heard his beckoning, but as an adult, too, I have heard him calling over and over again.
“Where are you? Come out, beloved daughter.”
He searches for us even when we don’t feel we deserve it. And this is the beautiful miracle of Grace.
Jesus said it like this, “I stand at the door and knock.”
Thank God, He still calls out. And thank God, He came back to the garden for us.
It’s not too late, if you want to join in for our last week of #30DaysofThanks–thoughts on gratitude and the love of the Father to help you focus as we dive into the end of November. Click here to sign up.