As many of you know, I am currently joining with several other guys from my church and reading through the Bible in four months. It has truly been some of the most enjoyable reading of God’s Word I have ever encountered. While I am reading "straight through" from Genesis to Revelation in the mornings, each evening before hugging my pillow I pause and read one or two Psalms. A few nights ago I read Psalm 56 and one of the lines King David wrote has been with me ever since:
"This I know, that God is for me."
These eight words change everything. Everything. The last half of the sentence is true. God is for us. Period. Whether we believe it or not. Whether we live in the light of its promise or not. Whether we remember it or not. Quite simply – it is true.
And then there is the first half of the sentence. "This I know…" Most likely, the first time I heard this phrase was when I was four and my mom and dad were teaching me "Jesus loves me….this I know…" Believing that Jesus loves me is also foundational. But I’ve got to say that there’s a part of me that – at least for today – thinks that what David wrote in Psalm 56 is even more life-changing. Here’s what I mean.
God IS love. Right? So the fact that God loves me is, in some sense, simply God being God. Is it possible for God to not love? Could He not love His creation? Don’t get me wrong, the truth that He loves me is huge. (After all, my hope and salvation hinges upon it!) And yet, I can’t imagine God being anything other than loving, in spite of the fact that I certainly don’t deserve it.
However, David didn’t say, "This I know, that God loves me. He says, "This I know, that God is for me. Knowing that God is FOR me is a whole different thing. David recognizes that God being for him is not just God loving His creation, but God choosing to celebrate His creation.
How differently – more fully, more abundantly, more joyfully, more purposefully, more passionately – you and I would live if this truth permeated our every thought: that the God who created us, who knows us, who sacrificed Himself for us, is for us.
Sit back and soak in that truth for a moment. God celebrates you. God is on your side. God rejoices over you. God wants you. God chooses you. God cherishes you. God is for you.
And now…take a deep breath and say these eight words out loud:
This I know, that God is for me.
Do you believe it? I hope so. It will change everything.