Define yourself as one beloved by God. This is the true self. Every other identity is an illusion.
– Brennan Manning
Throughout my life I struggled greatly with love and I lived unhappy for a very long time. See, one of the biggest lies I ever believed was, “you are not loved.”
When you believe that lie you allow others to treat you as if you are not worthy to be loved and you may end up in a horrible cycle. I didn’t walk away from relationships that weren’t good for me; I allowed others to invade my boundaries; and this affected my self-esteem. I tried to prove time and time again that I was lovable, but each time I failed leaving behind an even bigger wound than the one I had before.
I don’t know if life has treated you in a way that you feel like this or have felt this before in the past, but I am here to tell you: GOD LOVES YOU. All of Him loves all of you.
To Be Loved
So, what does it mean to be loved? Well, the dictionary definition is, “
That’s actually a very profound statement. First of all, love is deep. Affection means to be devoted or attached. So it’s saying love is a deep attachment or devotion to someone. The latter part says cherished, or in other words, valued.
God defines love like this, “Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. … Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:4-7, 13, NLT)
We were created to love and to be loved. That is why so many of us crave for deep, meaningful relationships. The problem is that society tells us that this is only found in a significant other, but if my relationship with God has taught me on thing it is that this isn’t necessarily true.
See, before we can love others we have to love ourselves first and in order to truly love ourselves we must see ourselves in the same way that our creator does. To unlock that secret we need to have a close relationship with God the father.
To be loved simply means to be known and to be valued, wanted, accepted.
A Constant Love
Growing up I had a difficult relationship with both of my parents which made it hard for me to accept love from others. This was mostly because I felt inadequate. If my parents didn’t love me, or I perceived that they didn’t, how could someone else? Maybe there’s something wrong with me?
I didn’t fit in with others and when I did, it was because I remained there silent with a smile on my face, never really expressing my thoughts or emotions. I was afraid that if people saw the dark corners of my life, they would somehow deem me as unlovable.
I believed the lie, BUT God. In His infinite love and mercy reached down and pursued me to show me what love truly is. How? Well, in order for this lie to unravel, I had to make a few mistakes. I allowed relationships in my life that would expose how I truly felt about myself. God proved to me time and time again that HE was not going to abandon me because of my mistakes. He was not going to turn away from me every time I had a bad thought or did something wrong. My relationship with God wasn’t about proving anything, it was about accepting. Accepting his love.
When God’s love becomes the center of our identity, when we learn to define ourselves as beloved by God, we become grounded in something eternal and constant. Entering in a relationship with God means to be known entirely and to still be loved, flaws and all.
That’s the center of the gospel. It’s really the greatest love story ever told.
Are you ready to accept this unconditional love and define yourself as one beloved by God?