Every Day Light
A prod toward perfection
"— what does the Lord your God ask of you but to fear the Lord your God —?" (v. 12)
For reading & meditation:
The first thing God called Israel to do when He announced that they were to be His special people and live the way He wanted them to live, was to fear Him. Loving Him, serving Him and keeping His laws were of great importance, of course, but the very first things God asks of them are reverence and fear. How does all this relate to the love of God? When thinking about God, it is wise to see love and holiness as intertwined; not to do so can lead sometimes to serious error. Many in today's Church present the love of God in such a way that it has given rise to the saying "God loves me as I am." The idea in many minds is: "God loves me as I am, and whether I go on from here or whether I stay the same, it makes no difference to His love for me." This is entirely true, but it is not the entire truth. Because God is love, He loves us as we are, but because He is holy love, He loves us too much to let us stay as we are. We can be secure in the fact that God loves us just the way we are, but the holy love of God calls us to move ever closer to Him and cries out: "Be holy as I am holy." Error is truth out of balance. We need to rejoice in the fact that we are loved because of who we are and not for what we do, but we must see also that God's love is a holy love and thus will inevitably prod us toward perfection.
O Father, help me keep these two things in balance. Don't let the security I feel as I rest in Your love turn to smugness and complacency. Show me that though I am "accepted in the Beloved," that does not mean You don't want me to come closer. Amen.
Come to http://www.cwr.org.uk for more inspirational devotions by Selwyn Hughes.