Encounter His Love // Receive God's Gifts For You

Day 1 of 4 • This day’s reading

Devotional

To Inhabit Love (You Have to Know Who God Is)

I have more for you. More than what you can see and hear and touch. There will be a day when you look into my eyes. Your mind will stretch, your heart overwhelmed, your soul expanding. For it knows—it knows by whom it was made. Thinking of Me, of My love for you now, is the fuel you need to get through any day. It is simple, really. My love for you equips you to soar. My love for you is the only true taste of freedom. And you are made to inhabit it.

I give you good gifts. I give you desire to love. I give you desire for joy. I give you desire for curiosity, for learning, for adventure, for connection. There is no competition for My love. There is no stretching to try to get to Me, to try to inhabit My love. It is what you are made to do. It is the only place where you feel peace, a sense of safety, security, calmness and energy and hope all at once.

This world, though, tells you a different story. It distracts you from Me, when you let it. And it is this distraction that fractures the soul, that stirs anxiety, competition—that prompts the chasing of a success that is meaningless—except for how it brings, ultimately, discontentment, restlessness, strife. You are made for more than what this world promises. You are not made for this world. Yet you inhabit it for a while, and here, in this world, is where I teach you how to turn toward Me with your whole heart. Your soul is hungry for peace. Your heart aches for joy. I am the only one who can give your soul, your heart, what they need.

So, will you let your heart turn toward Me now? Can you choose to quiet yourself, practice looking for Me, deep with you? This quietness, this turning inward for a time, is how you can inhabit this world with the protection of My love within you. For I am in you. I am with you. But I want to help you increase your awareness of Me within you. Turning toward My love for you, practicing thinking of My love for you, protects your heart as you inhabit this world. And it is when your heart is protected that you inhabit freedom as you live in this world—freedom that is my love—which, in turn, releases in you joy, hope, life.

And then you are ready. Again and again, you are ready. You are ready to step out and do things you never thought possible. You are equipped to bless, to give because you have received. You are filled with abundance, with my overflowing love for you. And you won’t be able to hold back this sense of freedom, joy, hope, any longer. You will inhabit it. For you are aware of My Spirit inhabiting you.

Deep breath now, son, daughter. Stand tall, your heart aligned with Mine. I have made you for beauty and laughter and dreaming. I have made you for living in courage, in faith that your strength comes from a knowing you are loved. And this love protects you, fights for you, fuels the abounding love in your heart.

Exercise:

Loving is hard. But receiving love is easy, isn’t it? You just receive it, right? Well, according to Gary Chapman, in his runaway bestseller, The Five Love Languages, there are five ways we can experience love: through gifts, through quality time, words of affirmation, acts of service, and through physical touch. And it’s not difficult to receive things like that, is it?

Well, it can be difficult to receive love, for example, if we doubt the giver—maybe a parent, a spouse, or a friend. It can be difficult if we don’t trust him or her . . . if we doubt the person’s character or motives or actual knowledge of our true selves. It can be difficult to receive love if we believe we’re being used or manipulated or treated carelessly.

So, what we think about the giver is what determines whether and how much “love” we’re willing to receive. If we hold a low view of a person, we might throttle back what we’re willing to receive. But if we hold a high view of that person, we’d likely be willing to receive everything they’re willing to give.

And it’s the same with God.

A.W. Tozer wrote, “the most portentous fact about any man [or woman] is not what he [or she] at a given time may say or do, but what [they] in [their] deep heart conceives God to be like.”

One of the main reasons that is true is that what we, in our deep hearts, conceive God to be like will determine whether and how much we allow Him to love us. It will determine the quality of our relationship with God.

No matter who we are, no matter how well we know Him or for how long, we can always seek to know Him more. And we must. The Apostle Paul wrote in Philippians chapter three, “My passion is to be consumed with him,” and he wrote “I continually long to know the wonders of Jesus more fully.” 

So, let’s allow God to increase the accuracy of your conception of Him. Let’s see if He’ll tell you, or show you, a bit more about what He’s really like, right now.

Father God, I want to better understand who you are. I want to increase my ability to receive Your love. I want to improve my ability to inhabit Your love. So, I ask you now . . . show me a picture of who You are—for me. Give me a word or a song. Whatever You’d like. I surrender my imagination to you.

I’m listening.

If you heard or saw something, if a thought or set of thoughts came into your mind, and if they fit within the principles of Scripture, if they fit everything you’ve read there about who God is, then take a few moments to write down what you got—you’re going to want to be able to return to it later, maybe again and again.

And if you didn’t hear or see anything, that’s perfectly okay. Just be alert and open, as the next few hours and days unfold. You’ve asked, and He’ll answer . . . in His way . . . with His timing. 

And He may answer when you least expect it.

Experience the Rush podcast—and encounter Holy Spirit in your modern life.