Link to recorded version on church website here for the next 8 weeks.
God loves me even when – I Follow
Some think that even though they follow God and believe, that God does not love them
They are not quite good enough to count as holy to receive from Him.
However God loves all who follow His Son even when they are not getting it all right.
No Matter what God loves those who follow Him.
We can not be separated from His love
He will answer with good things when we ask, especially His Holy Spirit
We might doubt and wonder about how much He can love us but it is total. He knows us and still loves us.
Luke 15:11-32 & Luke 11 9-13
Romans 8 31-39
- Over the last weeks we have looked at ‘God loves me even when …..’ I am Small and Broken, Weak and Afraid, I forgot and get of course.
This week we will be looking at ‘I Follow’, in many way’s these all tie together, we can be a follower of Jesus and still feel that I am to small, broken, Weak, afraid and lost for God to really love me. However the bible shows the lie in that train of thought.
- Over the years I have found many committed followers of Jesus who do not really believe He loves them.
Some think that even though they follow God and believe in Him, that God does not love them
I am not good enough
I am not important enough
others are in more need
I am to small
He has more important things to worry about
and many other thoughts
However God loves all who follow His Son even when they are not getting it all right.
Today we look at why I believe that and I do believe that.
- We can be a follower of Jesus and still feel that I am to small, broken, Weak, afraid and lost for God to really love me. However the bible shows the lie in that train of thought. Jesus loves you even if as a follower you fall short of what you think He expects. Nothing can separate us from His love.
Our reading from Romans says
‘And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus.’
Paul could not think of anything that could remove us from Gods love
What do you think you can do which will mean God no longer loves you?
Many over the years have held on to these words of Paul.
He may have suffered but he knew God loved Him.
- When Paul arrived, the Jewish leaders from Jerusalem gathered around and made many serious accusations they couldn’t prove. Paul denied the charges. “I am not guilty of any crime against the Jewish laws or the Temple or the Roman government,” he said. Then Festus, wanting to please the Jews, asked him, “Are you willing to go to Jerusalem and stand trial before me there?”
Acts of the Apostles 25:7-9 NLT
Faith means trusting God. ‘Faith’, as C.S. Lewis wrote, ‘is the art of holding on to things your reason has once accepted, in spite of your changing moods.’
It is hard to trust God when everything seems to be going wrong.
Our emotions and our heart can draw us back into old ways of doing things.
WE forget what our rational decision to follow God when we are disappointed, angry ect.
Paul did during his life and many others in the bible and since have trusted in Gods love for them during their struggles.
They like me knew deep in themselves that God really did love them.
- Life is a set of challenges, problems and hassles. We sometimes imagine that if we could just deal with the immediate challenge that we are facing, all our problems would be over. But life is not like that. If we resolve one problem, others are just around the corner.
The temptation is to see these challenges as preventing us from carrying out the ministry God has given us. In actual fact, dealing with the problems is the ministry. As one former Bishop of Kensington put it: ‘These are not the problems associated with the ministry, they are the ministry.’
35 Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? 36 (As the Scriptures say, “For your sake we are killed every day; we are being slaughtered like sheep.”) 37 No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.
What difficulties are you struggling with which God might be wanting to use to further your ministry for Him?
I spoke before about how God has got me to see how although I am weak and broken He has a use for my small light.
- “God’s timing is not always our timing. He sometimes does things little by little. When we become Christians and break down the idols in our lives, we might expect all our weaknesses and vices to be driven out at once, but character transformation is a long process. Little by little, he transforms us into the likeness of Christ as we listen and obey, working out our salvation with fear and trembling” Read in World Live
Just because we are struggling as a follower does not mean He does not love us, in fact the opposite is true it shows His love as He stays with us as he brings change in us.
31 What shall we say about such wonderful things as these? If God is for us, who can ever be against us? 32 Since he did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t he also give us everything else?
If God suffered to show His love how can we doubt He does.
- Luke 15
28 “The older brother was angry and wouldn’t go in. His father came out and begged him, 29 but he replied, ‘All these years I’ve slaved for you and never once refused to do a single thing you told me to. And in all that time you never gave me even one young goat for a feast with my friends. 30 Yet when this son of yours comes back after squandering your money on prostitutes, you celebrate by killing the fattened calf!’ 31 “His father said to him, ‘Look, dear son, you have always stayed by me, and everything I have is yours.
Do you feel like the older son?
Never given anything by God, working all the time for Him but not loved?
Then remember the last few words of this passage.
“His father said to him, ‘Look, dear son, you have always stayed by me, and everything I have is yours.
Everything God has is promised to you,
Yes their is great celebration for each new person who turns to God, however that does not mean He loves those who have followed for a long time any less.
For everything is already theirs.
- Luke 11:9-13
9 “And so I tell you, keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks, receives. Everyone who seeks, finds. And to everyone who knocks, the door will be opened.
11 “You fathers—if your children ask for a fish, do you give them a snake instead? 12 Or if they ask for an egg, do you give them a scorpion? Of course not! 13 So if you sinful people know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him.”
As a follower of Jesus you are a child of God, you have access to all He has.
Each of us just has to ask.
Often that is the problem, we do not believe we are worthy enough to ask.
Like the other son, we just put our head down and work day after day at following.
However what is the point of following like that and never accessing the Love the Father has for you?
When I came to faith it was with a great revelation of just how much I was loved by God.
I know I can ask my mum for any help I need and she will give it, I know I can ask any of you for help and you will give it.
I know even deeper that I can ask for help from my Lord and He will give it.
He will give just what I need.
I know I can because I have experienced His deep love for me
God wants to support His followers those who trust and have faith in His love.
- Psalm 139
1 O Lord, you have searched me out and known me;
you know my sitting down and my rising up;
you discern my thoughts from afar.
2 You mark out my journeys and my resting place
and are acquainted with all my ways.
3 For there is not a word on my tongue,
but you, O Lord, know it altogether.
4 You encompass me behind and before
and lay your hand upon me.
5 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
so high that I cannot attain it.
6 Where can I go then from your spirit?
Or where can I flee from your presence?
God knows all you are going through all your thoughts.
He just wants you to bring them to Him and ask for His help.
He can not help if you do not ask.
When you ask He will answer.
Can any of you tell us how you have struggled to ask for Gods help and what happen when you did eventually ask?
- Know this you are loved even if you do not think yourself worthy.
The bible is full of signs of how much God loves his children.
You and I are His children.
WE ARE LOVED, so much that He gave His LIFE for YOU.
- Let Us Pray
I want each of you to feel that you can bring to God your current needs.
So we will have a period of quite for you to do that.
Father God we come to you with our needs, our fears, our hopes and to know your love.
Send your Spirit to show us Jesus and therefore your love for us.
Send your Spirit to show us that you care about our problems know matter how small they might seem.
You are after all the God who knows how many hairs we each have.
Give us faith enough to trust that we can ask and will recive.
All this we ask in the Name of Jesus God who died for us.
If you would like prayer for anything and would like to be prayed with, please come to Clare, myself, Robert or one of the other prayer ministry team and we will pray for you to know the deep love Jesus has for you and bring together your needs to Him.
God wants us to pray for each other and through that He will show his love as we ask of His blessings.
Notice sheet piece
Does God love me even when I follow Him?
Over the last weeks we have looked at ‘God loves me even when …..’ I am Small and Broken, Weak and Afraid, I forgot and get of course. Some of these talks are still available on the website to listen to.
This week we will be looking at ‘I Follow’, in many way’s these all tie together, we can be a follower of Jesus and still feel that I am to small, broken, Weak, afraid and lost for God to really love me. However the bible shows the lie in that train of thought. Jesus loves you even if as a follower you fall short of what you think He expects. Nothing can separate us from His love.
‘And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus.’ 
You may have suffered from those who said they loved you but you will not from the Father. The story of the prodigal son  shows God’s love for those who wander away and the ones who do not. The elder son did not believe he was loved as much as the wandering son, but he was, he had just not asked for anything.  Know this you are loved even if you do not think yourself worthy.
 Romans 8:38-39
 Luke 15:11-32
 Luke 11 9-13