Praise Foundations

You Can’t Love Others Until You Understand God’s Love Toward You

Love is always the motivating reason, when it comes to anything God does for us. It’s why He sent His Son, to be the One who would stand between us and God, spanning the gap that sin created. Love. But do you know what extends beyond God’s love, and is more expansive than His universe? His glory. We worship God, from a heart of gratitude, to bring Him glory. The Lord wants His people to share about His love, but how can that happen when we struggle to love ourselves? Understanding how God’s love toward you is expressed by Him will be part of your transformation from within.

So many people question the love of God when life gets hard, but really His love is seen even more when we walk through our trials, because He never leaves us. Jesus Christ was clear that “in this world you will have tribulations” (John 16:33) and Peter said, “Do not be surprised by the fiery trials that try you,” (1 Peter 4:12). Hardships aren’t a sign that God doesn’t love you, but are, instead a sign that the enemy sees you as a threat. God’s love is expressed in His continual beckoning of your heart, calling you toward Him over and over- no matter what.

God’s Love Toward You Changes Your Love Toward Others

Psalm 30: 11-12 says, “For You have turned my mourning into dancing; You have put off my sackcloth and girded me with gladness so that my glory may sing praise to You and not be silent. O Lord, my God, I will give thanks to You forever.” Those two words are the reason beyond love: so that. So that your glory may sing praise to Him. We all have a measure of glory, attention, reputation, or “fame” in our lives, things we are known for, applauded for- and when we worship God, we set aside that aspect of ourselves, our “glory”, so that we can worship Him. That’s not as easy as it sounds!

When it hurts, when it costs you something that is of value to you- that is when your worship truly meets the definition of a sacrifice of praise.

In 2 Samuel 24:24 David said, “I will not offer up to the Lord burnt offerings that cost me nothing”. His perspective drew God’s attention- wow! We must exchange our glory for His, setting aside our own reputation to worship His. Jesus Christ is worth every sacrifice. When it hurts, when it costs you something that is of value to you- that is when your worship truly meets the definition of a sacrifice of praise.

Thought for today

The things God does for us aren’t just out of love. No. He “put a new song in your mouth”, a personal revelation, or miracle, or answer to prayer, a need met so that you will sing and not be silent, so that you will will give thanks to Him forever, so that your glory will worship His glory. It’s so that “many will see and hear and put their trust in the Lord” too. (Psalm 40:3)

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