There is something magical about the way we love our children. Especially infants. My youngest is currently 6 months old. There are moments when I look at her and I’m positively giddy. I must look like a fool, grinning ear to ear and squealing for no apparent reason. I see her, and get instant butterflies. I can’t control myself and scoop her up in my arms and hold her close.
Nearly every mother has felt this way about her children. What makes infants so special is that babies can’t earn our love. They can’t talk. They can not share great insight, speak terms of endearment, or perform great feats to make us proud. Their range of emotions is pretty limited. They are either smiling, or crying, or asleep. They can not feed themselves, or dress themselves, or keep themselves from harm. When they want something they can not ask. In fact, they are rather demanding when they want something. We have to guess what that something might be while they get increasingly more agitated waiting for us to figure it out.
If a stranger treated us this way, depending on us entirely, with out thanks or courtesy, we would likely be pretty upset. With our children though, it is our absolute pleasure to care for them. Not only do we care for them, we love them completely. They make us happy not because they can do anything for us, or because they have a winning personality. They bring us joy because they are ours. We can’t force them to love us in return, we just hope they will. When they do, it makes everything worth it.
This is one time in our lives when we get a small glimpse into the way God feels for each of us. He loves us completely, regardless of who we are, or what we can do for him. In Job 34:19, Job makes reference to this when He calls out some of the leaders, “Who shows no partiality to princes and does not favor the rich over the poor, for they are all the works of His hand.”
We are His creations, His children. This is a bond that is stronger than anything we could experience here on earth. Isaiah 49:15 talks about how even a nursing mother can forget her child, but God will never forget us. 1 John 3:1 says “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!”
Time and time again the bible tell us of God’s love for us in this manner. We can not earn His love, He loves us because we are His. Even through the salvation of Jesus Christ, we did not earn it. (Romans 5:8, Ephesians 2:8) He gave it freely, out of love. He only asks that we accept it, and when we do, it makes everything worth it.
Luke 15:10 says “In the same way, I tell you there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels over one sinner who repents.” If you have a red letter bible, you will notice these are the words of Jesus. His purpose here on earth was to express how much God loved us. There is great rejoicing when we love God in return.
Just as a mother loves her child, God loves us with out reason or explanation. And just as we forget about all the late nights and hard work when our children show their love for us, God rejoices when we love and follow him.