“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.” John 3:16-17 (NIV)
“God is an ageless romancer” were the words of the beloved Bible teacher at an all-female retreat.
Her words took me by surprise and appealed to my heart. I have always been a hopeless romantic — a sucker for rom-coms, Christmas movies on Lifetime, and happily-ever-after endings.
Having grown up in church, I often heard God described as Father, Friend, Way-Maker and Wonderful Counselor, to name a few. These names were easy to accept as true, but “romancer” was a bit difficult to embrace.
I'd reserved the word “romance” for men on white horses who slayed villains and rescued damsels in distress. Romancers were Prince Charmings in tuxedos, with roses in one hand and chocolates in the other. When I imagined a romancer, I didn’t imagine God.
But over the course of the weekend retreat, God began to enlarge my understanding of romance. This word isn’t limited to novels and date nights. This word encompasses God’s tremendous love and His relentless pursuit of humanity. I saw it throughout Scripture.
God pursued Adam and Eve after they sinned in the garden of Eden. (Genesis 3)
God pursued Hagar when she ran away from her problems. (Genesis 16)
God pursued Elijah when he ran from Ahab and Jezebel. (1 Kings 18-19)
God pursued Paul on the road to Damascus. (Acts 9)
And God pursues us.
Motivated by unexplainable love, God pursues humanity. No matter our state in life — married, single, dating, living for God or running from Him — God seeks to win the affection of our hearts by relentlessly and faithfully pursuing us.
We see a clear depiction of this pursuit in our key verses, John 3:16-17: “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.”
The love John refers to in this scripture is agape love, which is sacrificial and considered the highest form of love that exists. This love was costly for God, but He pursued us through the radical act of sacrificing His Son. God’s love is unmatched and far greater than any box of chocolates or bouquet of flowers.
And even more astounding is that God demonstrated His lavish and sacrificial love while we were sinners. He pursued us while we weren’t thinking about Him. His actions on our behalf overshadow the man on the white horse. Once and for all, God valiantly saved humankind from the spiritual villain Satan when we were in distress.
But God’s pursuit of us did not end with Christ's sacrificial death and resurrection. For all our days, He will continue to pursue us with His unexplainable love.
If you long to be romanced and pursued, may this be an encouragement: You are the object of God’s affection. He has relentlessly pursued and will continue to pursue you.
Dear God, thank You for pursuing me. Continue to remind me of Your steadfast love for all my days. Help me to rest in the fact that I am lavishly loved by You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
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Whether you are married or single, every woman should know she is already loved and pursued by God. Preorder Kia Stephens’ new book, Overcoming Father Wounds: Exchanging Your Pain for God’s Perfect Love, and discover more about God’s relentless love for you.
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FOR DEEPER STUDY
Romans 5:8, “But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (KJV)
How has God pursued you? How does this pursuit encourage you? Share your thoughts with us in the comments!
© 2023 by Kia Stephens. All rights reserved.
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