A physical stretch eases our limbs and a mental one fires up the brain. Though a leap may be beyond us, except for the fact that life is all about change and challenges. We all exercise faith on a daily basis, to some degree or other, as we trust the world around us to operate as it should. I am taking a leap of faith in sharing my words here.

One of the greatest challenges that faces us is also one of life’s greatest pleasures: loving and being loved in return. It opens us up to the possibility of heartache, despair, rejection and loss, as well as to a potential for joy and delight beyond measure.

We are all created as unique individuals, crafted by God’s loving hand, in order to know and be in relationship with Him. God is the Only Person Who loves us totally, unconditionally. As we draw near to the Christmas period we have opportunity to reflect on just who Jesus is and why He came into the world.

“This is how much God loved the world: He gave His Son, His one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in Him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life” ~ John 3:16 The Message
We can struggle to accept that we are loved. Perhaps our upbringing and family life failed to affirm it to us, or being hurt by other people may have made a serious dent in our ability to believe it. Once our hearts have been crushed or broken they may feel beyond repair. How do we learn to love again when we feel unlovable? Our poor self-image and imperfections can lead us to feel unworthy of receiving or giving love away freely to others.

“Oh the comfort, the inexpressible comfort of feeling safe with a person; having neither to weigh thoughts, nor measure words, but to pour them all out just as they are, chaff and grain together, knowing that a faithful hand will take and sift them, keep what is worth keeping, and then, with the breath of kindness, blow the rest away” ~ George Eliot

My relationship with God is a safe harbour like this, as He takes the worst of me and does everything to promote and encourage the good. There’s such comfort and freedom in being able to pour out all that I am and experience, and know He cares, understands and will bring about the necessary changes. God meets with us right where we are. We don’t have to clean up our act before coming to Him.

Sometimes He has to do a healing work in us before we can believe we are lovable. Past emotional conflict and pain can stand in the way. Are we ready to exercise our faith in The Only Person Who will always love and be there for us ? Are we ready to take that leap?

Dear Father,
Our hearts weigh heavy at time,s as we long to be able to be loved and give love to others. So many things can get in the way. We may not feel worthy or capable. We may lack the resources emotionally to be open and trusting. It can feel scary to let another person see who we are behind the masks we wear to try to fit in, even though we may feel isolated, lost and alone in our differences.

Yet, You made each one of us unique and special. We have gifts and abilities to share. There are no Outsiders in your kingdom of grace. Help us to see ourselves as we are In Christ and as You see us – Accepted, Beloved, Chosen. Then work within our hearts to enable us to be healed, at peace with You, with ourselves and one another, set free to love and be loved as you planned for us to be.
Thank you.