I Never Knew I Could Love Like This

“As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him.” Psalm 103:13 NIV

One Hebrew word for mercy or compassion is “racham.” Racham is the origin of the Hebrew word for womb (rechem). Racham describes the parental kind of love that we feel deeply as a mom or dad. Often the reaction to having a child for the first time is, “I didn’t know I could ever love someone tis much.” The love we feel overtakes us, filling our hearts so full that we feel like bursting. This is one description of the love and mercy that God our Father has for us.

I believe this love can also be known and expressed by adoptive parents, giving parental love to the children they have chosen to make part of their family. Our children, whether birthed or adopted, are a part of who we are. We feel what they feel – when they are happy, we are happy. When they are hurting, we are hurting. If they are in need, we do whatever we can to help them, even if it means sacrifice. We want the best for our children and to share what we have with them. We want to see them reach their full potential and to find expression for their talents and interests. We want to protect our children and keep them from heartache. Parental love is an intuitive characteristic that we have from our Father God. In a healthy relationship, the way we love our children is a glimpse of the way that God loves us.

Jesus gave us the story of the prodigal son in Luke 15 to help us understand the merciful love of our Father God. In Ephesians 3:18 Paul prays that we would be able to comprehend the love that God has for us – the depth, the height, the width, the length. Our faith is based on knowing and trusting God’s love. The way we live life and interact with others is based on it. The way we minister to others is hinged on our comprehension of God’s person and the depth of His love and mercy.

One of the closest comparisons that we have is the love a mother or a father has for their own child. Even then, parents may fail us, but God never will. When we know the depth and width of God’s love, it affects our relationship with Him, never again doubting who He is or what He is doing. His mercy never runs out. His love never comes to an end.

Application: If the relationship that you had with a mother or a father was not a good one, you can still know the perfect love of a Father when you get to know God. Any imperfections of love that may have hurt you in the past, God will heal and restore when you trust His love and mercy.

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