Sometimes it’s easy to get lost. Lost in a world of confusion that makes me doubt my future. Lost during times of personal uncertainty. Lost in religion and rules and the bitterness that follows. For those who have spent time in and around religious institutions (especially the Christian Church) it can become easy to forget that unconditional love can be real. I really believe that apart from money, fame, good looks, success, and every other pursuit of our society; our souls thirst for one thing above all, unconditional love.

It’s insanity to run from God and search for love. So many people run from God (or keep Him at arm’s length) instead of running to Him. It seems like we all have the same issues, some just react differently. ¬†Maybe some run because it’s just too hard to believe that if you come near to God, you will find yourself not drowning in condemnation but swimming in compassion. If you draw near to God, He will be your home because He receives those who are “weary and gives rest.” I think we run from God because we long to be loved but we have convinced ourselves that the One who is most loving could not embrace us with our scars, nor accept us with our hatred of those who pushed rules down our throat.

We are afraid God will end up being like His representatives.

Really, it’s absurd that any religion would somehow bring you to God. It’s like being in love with a person who has no interest in you. They love your advances only because it makes them feel self-important, but they really have no motivation to pursue you. It’s all one-sided. When religion is created and presented on the premise that God withholds His love and you must submit to the system to earn that love; that is the WORST of corruptions!

That is why so many are abandoning the Christian church. It is not so much a problem that they have with Jesus, but the religious system that has told us that if we want God’s love, we have to follow the rules. It’s been far more important to focus on the sin problem rather than the love problem. We have forgotten that before a blood-soaked cross ever purchased our sin debt, we were ALL hopeless. This is why religious institutions can maintain control over people’s lives, and this is also why the Christian church in America is experiencing such an exodus of disheartened people. People for whom Christ died. What governments have not always been able to do, religions have accomplished with amazing effectiveness, because we long to belong, and we long to be loved.

What would happen if you and I were to discover the true message of Jesus Christ within the Church?? The message that love is truly unconditional. What would happen in your life if you did not have to perform in order to accept God’s love? Would anyone actually choose to be a slave of ritual and legalism? The sad answer is yes. Religion works because we doubt that we could be loved unconditionally.

Someone said “For in the issues of love, you cannot send someone, you must go in yourself.” This is the story of God. He pursues you (and me too!) with His love again and again. In my case, God has allowed me to come to the end of my pitiful performance rope, and I am so thankful. At the end of that rope, I found love. I found God.

Never forget, God did not announce His love for you by an angel or a prophet……..

He came Himself.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3 Comments

    • peggyc

      great blog…so much experience there…I was told that if I did not stay with my first husband, who tried or threatened to kill me every day for a year and nine months…that I would go to hell…indeed I have been thru hell but God has held me tight and brought me into recovery O hallelujah…Isaiah 64: 1

      reply
    • Davina

      Wow Brady Great blog!

      reply
    • Courtney Hill

      It’s true that legalism kills. When a church or pastor implies that someone must meet a standard or code in order to earn God’s approval, the results are ultimately burn-out and frustration. There is a danger to the implication here, though. God’s unconditional love is very real, but He is not going to leave a person unchanged. As He wrote through Ezekiel, “I will write my law on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they will be my people.” And we must not forget that Paul said in Romans that we have been predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son. That is God’s goal and it will be accomplished in His children. But the cool thing about that is this- when God is at work in me, I don’t have to force that to happen by obeying a code. God has written it on my heart and there is no greater joy in life than in being obedient to Him. But the danger of placing the emphasis on unconditional love is that people get the idea that repentance is not needed when it definitely is.

      Regarding the church in America’s biggest problem, I would say there are 2 primary issues that are interrelated. One is we’ve lost the Gospel. We preach various forms of a gospel, but most of the time we preach a therapeutic gospel that is supposed to help people cope with their problems rather than preaching a Gospel that is the power of God unto salvation for all those who believe. The other failing of many churches is that we’re so worried about our own survival that we’re unwilling to speak difficult truths of the Gospel and we’ve decided that we have to look and act like the world in order to reach people. We’ve resorted to various methods to catch people rather than preaching the Gospel which, by the power of the Holy Spirit, is the only thing that can actually change a person. So, when you lose the power of the Gospel, you have to prop it up with various gimmicks to produce the effect desired, which is large numbers of people responding and sticking around. But if the true Gospel is preached, God saves and forever changes people and you can’t keep them away.

      reply

Leave a Comment