Does Jesus Still Love Me?
The three-year-old was quite serious when she asked her mother this age-old question: “Does Jesus still love me?” Harper had disobeyed and knew her mom wasn’t happy, but most importantly, she wondered what Jesus thought. Could He possibly love her even though she’d “blown it” again?
Little Harper’s question is poignant because, if we’re honest, many of us have asked this very question. You may be pondering this question right now. Or you may know someone who is wondering whether or not God can ever forgive them.
Amazingly, the answer to that question is simple. Yes, the Lord loves us. Indeed, we discover time and time again in Scripture that God loves everyone (“For this is how God loved the world, He gave His one and only Son…” is how the New Living Translation’s John 3:16 explains this fact). Most of all, He is “not willing for any to perish, but for all to come to repentance” (II Peter 3:9, New American Standard Bible).
Repentance is key to a secure relationship with God, just as it is critical to restore any relationship. Harper’s mother still loved her despite the willful disobedience, but in order to make things right, Harper had to ask her mom for forgiveness. When she did so, they moved on because there wasn’t anything to interfere with their healthy, harmonious relationship.
Merriam-Webster explains that repentance basically means “to feel or show that you are sorry for something bad or wrong ….and that you want to do what is right.” In other words, attaining forgiveness involves these components:
Feeling sorrow or regret.
Expressing that regret specifically.
Seeking forgiveness to make the relationship right again.
These three steps heal broken relationships, including the one we have with God. Whether it’s the first time (as we find in Romans 10:9, NLT, “If you openly declare that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved”) or the many times over a life-long journey that we need to ask God for forgiveness, the process is very straightforward. This is how the Apostle John described it:
“If we admit our sins—simply come clean about them—He won’t let us down. He’ll be true to Himself. He’ll forgive our sins and purge us of all wrongdoing.”
(I John 1:9, The Message Bible)
So, if you feel you’ve blown it with God, ask for His forgiveness. While God loves you, He is going to wait for you to “want to do what is right.”
If you know people who feel unsure about the Lord’s love for them, encourage them today with the truths we’ve just covered. Remind them of the simple steps to either begin a relationship with Jesus or to reconnect with Him.
And if you want to stay reassured of the Lord’s love for you, read His Word in the days, weeks, and months ahead. Why? Well, Harper would probably explain it this way: “Jesus loves me, this I know, for the Bible tells me so…”
Thought of the Season
And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 8:38-39, New Living Translation