I need to say that I am not a writer. What I mean is that I have never felt particularly called to write. I am a preacher and a pastor. That, I feel called to do, but writing, well this avenue of communication makes me nervous. Maybe because I cannot see how you are reacting. When communicating verbally I can see when I am not making sense, or need to spend more time explaining something. By writing, if I fail at my task, then I fail. I have been asked to write however, and I am going to do my best to convey what I believe God is calling me to convey.
Good that is out of the way. Now let me say something that I think we all need to know. God loves you and God loves me. God loves us. God loves that neighbor you cannot stand, and that person whom you think is no good. God loves you when you do not love yourself.
I am not that lovable. I wish I could tell you otherwise. I wish I could tell you that I am a great person, that I would never do anything to hurt someone else, that I help elderly people cross the streets and feed the homeless people everyday. I wish I could tell you that I do not curse ever and rarely if ever make a fool of myself, but I cannot do any of that. I cannot lie to you and tell you that God loves me because of who I am. God love me because of who God is. “God is love,” one person once wrote. That little piece of wisdom made its way into the Bible and I am glad it did. God is love and God loves me and God loves you.
I recall one day when my son was just learning to talk. I would tell him to say something and then wait to see if he would repeat it. “Say ‘green,’” I would say, and he said, “green.” “Say ‘happy,’” I would say and he said, “happy.” One day as he was sitting in his high chair we were playing that little game and I said, “Say ‘love,’ Langston.” He said, “mommy.” It just happened that as he said that my wife was walking by in the other room and heard him and honestly I believe it changed her. To be the object of someone’s love changes people.
I wonder if I were to ask Jesus to say love what he would say. I wonder if he would take up with my son and say something like, “Garrett.” I wonder if Jesus appeared in front of you if he would say your name is love. I do believe that when your name is mentioned to Jesus, love pours out of him. I do not care who you are. I really do not think it matters what you have done. I truly do not believe it even matters if you believe in him because he believes in you. “Jesus say, ‘love’,”, I would say and Jesus says, “Garrett.” And that changes me. Maybe I am not that lovable but when I am loved anyway I find myself becoming a little better because I am simply so grateful to be loved.
I hope and pray that you know that today, and tomorrow, and forever. You are loved because God is love and God believes you are love. I guess that means you are pretty special.