You Are Loved
Am I the only one who loves the dictionary? Please tell me I’m not. Someone, anyone, tell me you share in my dictionary love. For those of you who don’t understand my dictionary love – let me explain.
Words are important. Super duper to the nth degree important.
Dictionaries tell us what words mean, they give us the many different meanings of a word, and they give us similar and opposite words aka synonyms & antonyms.
I love understanding words because it helps bring God’s word into better light.
For example, the word beloved. It happens to be the word we’re focusing on in today’s devotional and
- it’s what God called Jesus,
- how He refers to His children,
- and what believers call each other.
Beloved is an important word to know. It’s part of our identity and also an emotion and action we’re to have for others.
Let’s get into the meaning. Get ready for some warm fuzzies. Ready?
- dearly loved,
- dear to the heart.
It’s the kind of love your grandma has for you, but way way better.
It means you are
- God’s favorite,
- precious to Him,
- His special son,
- His special daughter.
Feeling those warm fuzzies and that big hug from Papa God yet?
This word’s origin is really the combination of two words, be+loven. I love looking at it that way. In my mind it adds such clarity to the words meaning.
Be = static, firm, unmoving + loven = warm, comforting, accepting.
It just wraps my heart and body in this big warm hug. God’s hugs are the best.
Truth: You are God’s beloved, His cherished, favored child.
Click to the right for the devotion question PDF Are You Loved Questions
“To all who are beloved of God in Rome, called as saints…”
This is Paul’s opening statement to the Christians in Rome.
Don’t you love how we started his communication with them by reminding them they were “beloved of God”.
- How would your day look if, when your feet hit the floor in the morning, you said, “self – you are beloved of God”?
1 Corinthians 15:58
“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord…”
Here Paul is speaking to the Christians in Corinth. Those same Christians we talked about in Three Things You Need to Know.
Paul is telling these “beloved brethren” to
- stand firm and
- not give up,
- to continue doing God’s work,
regardless of if they ever see the results of their good work.
- Beloved brethren, where do you need to remain steadfast and immovable?
- Is there something God has asked you to do that you’ve gotten tired of doing? Tired because you don’t feel like you see any good coming from it?
Take heart beloved, if God has asked you to do something He WILL have the ultimate victory.
Truth: God WILL see the purposes for the work He’s called you to through to the end.
Don’t give up beloved.
- How could we pray for you in this situation?
- What would help you stand firm in the work God has asked you to do?
“As He says also in Hosea, “I will call those who were not My people, ‘My people,’ and her who was not beloved, ‘beloved’”
In this scripture Paul is quoting the Old Testament prophet Hosea. The people referenced in this passage are the Israelites, God’s chosen people.
This speaks to God having chosen people who didn’t know Him
to then be His people, His chosen people.
The full context of this passage talks about how Israel’s relationship with God has been off and on. They follow God one moment and follow other gods another.
Then when things get real real bad Israel is down on their knees begging for forgiveness and turning back to God.
Hot & cold. On & off.
Our lesson in this – never turn away from God. Remain His beloved.
- Have there been times in your life when you decided you didn’t need God?
- Why and what happened?
- What brought you back to God?
- What lesson did you learn in that?
- What did it teach you about God’s love for you?
- How do you experience being loved by God now?
“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”
Oh happy day. Here’s one of my favorite words again, therefore.
This time Paul is telling us what our attitude and behavior should look like in response to what God’s done for us.
Forgiveness of sins and eternal life and His immeasurable love and His unending provision
and fill-in-the-blanks with the multitude of things He’s done…
We are holy and beloved to God.
My commentary says that beloved is incomprehensible special love.
Truth: You are beloved, clothed in an incomprehensible special love.
How do you not clothe yourselves with the things Paul mentioned when you think of that kind of love.
- What attitudes and behaviors do you have that reflect being God’s beloved?
- Are there any of the above items you’re not displaying?
- Would you ask the Holy Spirit to clothe you with that thing?
If you do, we’d love to hear what happens. It’s so exciting seeing how the Holy Spirit works in people’s lives.
“He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “this is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to Him.”” Matthew 17:5
This verse is complexly simple. Complex because it’s God speaking to His Son, Jesus.
Complex because of all that that conversation entails. We’ll go into this later (and in the book God has us writing).
Let’s look at the simple aspect of this verse. The beloved.
Up to now we’ve looked at beloved as a term used for believers. Used by God and other Christians.
Here you have God using the same word He uses when referring to us, when He spoke to Jesus. Think about that for a minute.
Jesus was God made man and living a life just like you and me.
God is the creator of all things and He referred to Himself the same way He refers to you and me.
Maybe that’s not so simple but it sure is amazing.
Truth: The same love and emotion God had for Jesus, He has for you!
If that doesn’t give you warm fuzzies and make you feel extra special and super loved, I don’t know what will.
- What thoughts or emotions does this idea bring to you?
- What do you think your response to this love should be?
- Is there anything God’s asking you to change in response to His love for you? If so, what?
- How could you, God’s beloved, show others this amazing love?
If you need further guidance based on anything you read, please talk with your pastor. If you don’t have a pastor, email us at [email protected]
As always, we’d love to hear from you. Send us an email or drop something in the comments below. We’re here to serve you – help us love you better by sharing with us.
Today’s Quick Tip
Loving yourself is a tough thing to do. Today we’re going to work on doing just that. Why? Cuz we can’t love others like Christ does unless we love ourselves like Christ does.
Ready to give this a go?
You’ll have to practice this because, kinda like learning to ride a bike, you’ve gotta practice before you’ll be able to ride (love) without falling (too much). Here we go… download the PDF here:4 Tips for Loving Yourself
- Overcome negative thoughts and beliefs about yourself. Replace these thoughts and beliefs with some of what we learned today. Go back to some of our earlier posts to learn more about your identity in Christ. Hang with us for the next couple of days and you’ll learn even more. You want to replace negative thoughts and beliefs with the thoughts and beliefs that God has for you. Ask yourself what God thinks of you and then think just like He does.
- Avoid Perfectionism – we aren’t God so we’re bound to make mistakes. Let yourself. Give yourself goals and then write down what it will take to reach those goals. Spend your time focusing on the tasks that lead to the goals and not the goal itself. When you make mistakes with these tasks (or anything), ask yourself what can be learned from the situation. Course correct. Dust yourself off. Remind yourself of who God says you are. Keep going.
- Change Your Focus – If you’re one who always thinks about the negatives, you need to get a new thing to focus on. You need a new Instagram filter for your thoughts. Start focusing on the positive in every situation. Yes, I just said every situation. When we focus on something it takes over everything like a clingy ex-boyfriend or girlfriend. Just like you wanted to get rid of them you need to get rid of negative thinking. Go find that positive and then cling to it in a good healthy way. I promise it’ll change the way you feel about yourself.
- Never Call Yourself Names (unless there one’s God calls you) – You are a child of God.Period. When we call ourselves names, say we’re a failure, worthless, no good, etc. we’re saying that the perfect you that God created is those things. That’s just not true! You may have done something wrong or made a mistake but it doesn’t make you those things. If you make a mistake, own up to it but don’t become it. Instead say “yes, I made (fill in the blank) mistake. Forgive me. I’m still a talented, creative, smart…child of God” Yes, forgive yourself and yes, talk to yourself. You don’t have to tell anyone I told you to do those things.
Truth: Love yourself in the same way that God loves you.