Apr 9, 2014

He Loves Me Anyway.....

Today's Reading: Matthew 26:17-29
Find the Reading Plan here. 


"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 8:39


My mind has been so fixated on our reading in Matthew this week.

As I watched my daughter play soccer, as I sat down to eat dinner, as I got myself ready for bed....I just kept thinking of Jesus and the Last Supper with His disciples.

The one thing that keeps my mind spinning is the part about Judas, the one who would betray Jesus.

Jesus and the disciples ate the Passover Meal together, prayed together, and Jesus washed their feet.

"After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him." John 13:5

Jesus knew that Judas was planning to betray Him and hand Him over to be killed, yet Jesus served Judas and loved him anyway.

This is the part that I have such a hard time wrapping my mind around. Jesus foreknew of Judas' betrayal, yet, Jesus still loved and washed his enemy's feet.

Judas betrayed Jesus for a mere $25 bucks or so.

Even typing this, my stomach is knotting up.

How did Jesus love Judas knowing this? Not just love Judas, but washed his stinkin' feet!

Think about it this way: Imagine your greatest betrayal. Imagine the heartbreak involved. Now, imagine that God let you know before the incident took place. Imagine you had foreknowledge that you would be deeply hurt or betrayed.

Would that change the way you felt or acted toward the betrayer?

Sadly, I think the answer would be yes for me.

When I think about the many times I have turned away from Jesus, for something the world had to offer that was tempting at the time, I shudder.

Certainly, I too, have betrayed Jesus at some time or another.

I remember one specific time in college when someone asked about my faith. The answer I gave them makes my heart sink today as I think back. I have asked the Lord for forgiveness, and He has forgiven me.

However, I knew better even then. I was a Christian.

My heart was not yet fully surrendered to Christ at that time. I believed in Him, but I did not activate my faith. I kept it often hidden, and used it for desperate times and desperate measures. I called on God when I needed Him, and then quickly forgot Him again.

Oh, this is so painfully honest.

Certainly I have betrayed Jesus for less than Judas did at varying times in my life.....

pride
greed
self-indulgence
lust
arrogance
unbelief
idols


Just to name a few.

The good news is, Jesus knew I would. Just like He knew Judas would betray Him.

Judas' betrayal, my betrayal, all of our betrayals, He foreknew.

And, He loved us anyway.

Not just loved us, but died for us.

I look back on my life, and see the times that Jesus washed my feet, served me, loved me, cared for me, protected me.....when certainly He knew I would betray Him for the surrender to my flesh in the days or years to come.

It sure didn't stop Him from loving me. Or dying for me. And you.

Is your precious heart as overwhelmed as mine is today?

Girls, it's so hard to understand this kind of unconditional love that He has for us. I think it would blow the hair right off our heads if we were able to truly understand the depth of His love for us. Even knowing that we will mess up. Even knowing that we will turn away from Him at times.

Yet, He loves us anyway.

That part never changes. Ever.

No matter the depth of our depravity, He's always been our biggest fan. He's always got the warm water ready to wash off the dirt we have climbed into.

Not only that, but He has a future, a plan, a great purpose for our lives!

Remember our memory verse? 

"For I know the plans I have for you", declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

There is a song that plays on the radio. Every time I hear it, I cry uncontrollably. I mean, ugly cry.

I want you to read the words. I want you to know how much the Father loves you. I want you to rest in that place of Love, Acceptance and Peace today.

Here's the Youtube link if you want to listen. Grab your Kleenex box. You have been warned. :)

"You Love Me Anyway"
by Sidewalk Prophets

The question was raised
As my conscience fell
A silly, little lie
It didn’t mean much
But it lingers still
In the corners of my mind

Still you call me to walk
On the edge of this world
To spread my dreams and fly
But the future’s so far
My heart is so frail
I think I’d rather stay inside

[Chorus:]
But You love me anyway
It’s like nothing in life that I’ve ever known
Yes, You love me anyway
Oh, Lord, how You love me
How You love me

It took more than my strength
To simply be still
To seek but never find
All the reasons we change
The reasons I doubt
And why do loved ones have to die?

[Chorus:]
But You love me anyway
It’s like nothing in life that I’ve ever known
Yes, You love me anyway
Oh, Lord, how You love me

[Bridge:]
I am a thorn in Your crown
But You love me anyway
I am the sweat from Your brow
But You love me anyway
I am the nail in Your wrist
But You love me anyway
I am Judas’ kiss
But You love me anyway

See now, I am the man who yelled out from the crowd
For Your blood to be spilled on this earth shaking ground
Yes then I turned away with the smile on my face
With this sin in my heart tried to bury Your grace
And then alone in the night I still called out for You
So ashamed of my life, my life, my life

[Chorus:]
But You love me anyway
Oh, God, how you love me
Yes, You love me anyway
It’s like nothing in life that I’ve ever known
Yes, You love me anyway
Oh, Lord, how You love me
Yes, You love me,
Yes, You love me
Yes, You love me,
Yes, You love me
How You love me
How You love me
How You love me





basking in His love,


jill