An old man in a desert built a giant boat for an impending flood? Of course he did!
A young shepherd killed a giant with a rock and a slingshot? Why not?
The seas split apart and a massive group of people walk across on dry land? That’s cool.
But when it comes to the elementary truth that most 5 year olds could tell you–or even sing for you? I have a hard time.
“Jesus loves me. This I know. For the bible tells me so.”
It really hit me yesterday how simple and yet profound that is. The bible tells me that Noah really did build an ark, and that his family and the animals were spared the watery death that the rest of the world faced. It tells me that David really did pick up 5 stones but only needed one to defeat Goliath. It tells me that Moses led God’s people out of slavery by parting the waters and guiding them safely through. But that same bible also tells me that even when I was an enemy of God, at just the right time, God sent his son to die for me, so that I might have peace with God.
Why is that so hard for me to believe? Partly because it doesn’t always feel true. Those epic stories don’t feel untrue based on my self-esteem or the frequency of my bible reading or how my day is going. But deep inside of me is the lie that God’s love for me is based on and swayed by the things I do or don’t do.
For the past few months, God has been revealing that lie to me. He has been showing me that the roots of that legalistic, works-based mindset run deep. He has been graciously and tenderly showing me the peace and rest I have been missing out on by refusing to believe the gospel.
He’s been doing it in pretty epic ways, such as meeting me in quiet moments and speaking peace and truth to my heart.
He’s also doing it in simple ways, such as a conversation with a friend that reveals to me that sometimes we just have to take people at their word. If I can do that, if I can believe that my friend forgives me and still loves me and isn’t disappointed in me, how much more so can I believe that God- with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change – loves me with an unconditional love because it is secure in the completed work of Christ.
It’s so difficult for me, because I still just barely understand the gospel. It’s a story that is fantastical as well. And yet, the bible tells me that it is so. May God continue to grow in all of us the childlike faith to believe that simple and the fantastical truth of his love.