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Jan 22

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Zephaniah 3:17
“He will take great delight in you;
in his love he will no longer rebuke you,
but will rejoice over you with singing.”

Be honest. Have you ever just not liked someone, but weren’t sure why?

One time in my life there was a girl that rubbed me the wrong way with almost everything she did. I couldn’t figure out what it was. And then one day, it hit me – I wasn’t really crazy about her because deep down I could tell she wasn’t too crazy about me.

I’ve often wondered if sometimes we struggle with a desire to pray for the exact same reason. Sure, we know deep down that God technically “loves” us – as in a general, “he has to because he loves the whole world” kind of way. But does he actually like me?

I think until we truly understand the character of God and His affection for us, prayer will remain a drudgery instead of a delight. But when it clicks, really clicks, that the Creator of the Universe is crazy about us – it will be hard to make ourselves stop praying!

Maybe that’s why Paul prayed for his friends at the church in Ephesus this way –

“And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts, living within you as you trust in him. May your roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love; and may you be able to feel and understand, as all God’s children should, how long, how wide, how deep, and how high his love really is; and to experience this love for yourselves, though it is so great that you will never see the end of it or fully know or understand it. And so at last you will be filled up with God himself.” (Ephesians 3:17-19 TLB)

I want to encourage you to read that verse again, but this time personalize it. Every time it says anything like “you” or “your” change it to “I,” “me,” “my” or “mine.”

Now, consider these others verses about God in relation to you and let them sink down deep:

“He found him in a desert land,
And in the howling waste of a wilderness;
He encircled him, He cared for him,
He guarded him as the pupil of His eye.” (Deuteronomy 32:10)

“He will take great delight in you;
in his love he will no longer rebuke you,
but will rejoice over you with singing.” (Zephaniah 3:17)

“The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities. As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us… as a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him.” (Psalm 103)

Hear it deep in your spirit today – God really, really loves you. And He really, really likes you. He made you and He likes your smile and your personality and all the weird, quirky things that make you you. And He loved you enough to come and die for you and to desire intimacy with you.

Maybe that thought alone could drive us into more frequent conversation and friendship with God.