How to let the Lord love you? – Healing

In the previous blog post, we looked at the great need for repenting from the lies that we have believed about God before we are able to truly believe the truths about His love and enter into them by faith. Today we will look at the important role that healing plays in being able to experience God’s loving presence.

Finding oneself disconnected from love, and particularly God’s love, is a universal human experience. Sin separates all of us from experiencing the love of God. That is, until we meet the Lord Jesus and discover His saving grace and experience reconciliation with God through Christ’s work on the cross. But for many, this is still something that they struggle to experience in reality, even though they have believed into Jesus and experienced salvation from their sin. They may know that they are free from sin, but yet they still struggle to boldly approach God’s throne as a son whom He loves… whether it is to receive from Him, open their beings to Him, or to just spend time with Him.

There are only two reasons why people do not approach God boldly. Ignorance and Fear. Many do not know that they can approach God and enjoy all that He is, whereas others are too afraid to do so. Ignorance is something that can be solved by hearing the good news that there is a God that loves us and wants to know us, and that through Jesus we have a way to know Him. Fear on the other hand is much more complex. There can be many reasons we find ourselves afraid of God. The problem is that often we do not even realise when we are afraid of Him.

The reasons that we fear God are perfectly illustrated in Genesis 3.

Now the serpent was more crafty than any other beast of the field that the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God actually say, ‘You shall not eat of any tree in the garden’?” And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat of the fruit of the trees in the garden, but God said, ‘You shall not eat of the fruit of the tree that is in the midst of the garden, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.'” But the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil. So when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was to be desired to make one wise, she took of its fruit and ate, and she also gave some to her husband who was with her, and he ate. – Genesis 3:1‭-‬6

Satan deceived Adam and Eve with a lie about God’s character. He made them think that God was keeping something from them, and that He could not be trusted. This mistrust caused them to take matters into their own hands to gain that which they believed God was keeping from them. This mistrust led to disobedience which resulted in sin. And that sin led to fear. Fear of God.

Then the eyes of both were opened, and they knew that they were naked. And they sewed fig leaves together and made themselves loincloths. And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden. But the Lord God called to the man and said to him, “Where are you?” And he said, “I heard the sound of you in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked, and I hid myself.”
Genesis 3:7‭-‬10

Sin caused Adam and Eve to cover themselves with fig leaves and hide away from God (probably behind some bushes). They did this because they were afraid. They knew that God was all powerful and that He was the just judge over all the universe. So they were afraid of what He would do to them if He found them. They were afraid of confronting God in their sinful state.

In this story we see that Fear doesn’t stand alone. It is built upon and works in tandem with a range of different emotions and experiences. Doubt, Mistrust, Desire, Disobedience, Sin, Shame, and Fear were all woven together to separate Adam and Eve from God, and from His love.

And it is no different when it comes to our relationships with God. Without even realising it we inwardly hide from His presence and His love. We clothe ourselves with fig leaves and hide our hearts behind bushes. And often our fear is also very much intertwined with a range of other experiences and emotions.

In order to be found in His love and in His presence it requires us to let go of the things that cause us to fear. To be healed, so to speak from the things that have caused us to believe Satan’s lies, doubt God’s goodness, Mistrust His character, Desire that which give us Independence from God, Disobey His life-giving ways, Sin against Him, and end up in places of Shame and Fear.

The challenge is that we cannot heal ourselves. We cannot sort ourselves out behind the bush in order to be joined back to God in the open. Even if we are the ones that caused the separation, we are unable to make things right. Only God can. The beauty is that He loves us so much and desires to make things right so that we can be joined to Him again and walk with him in the openness of the garden.

God does this in two specific ways that are seen in Genesis 3. He disciplines Adam and Eve (Gen 3:14-19), and He clothes them with animal skins (Gen 3:21). This heals them from their Sin and sets them free from Fear. They are disciplined for their sin in very specific ways, and their nakedness is covered with clothes that are made by God himself (by shedding the blood of an animal to atone for their sin). Once this happens they are no longer afraid of God. For that which separated them from Him had been dealt with. They were free to walk with Him again.

Today our experience is no different to Adam and Eve. We also need to experience God’s disciplining and clothing in order to be healed and set free to enjoy His presence and love again.

for the LORD disciplines (corrects) those He loves, as a father the son in whom he delights. Prov 3:12

God disciplines us by revealing to us what it was that we have done wrong, what lies we have believed, what aspects of His character we have mistrusted, what desires caused us to seek independence, how we have disobeyed Him, what sins we have committed, and how this has caused us to experience shame and fear. He shows us our mistakes and then corrects us. He lovingly reveals to us the consequences of our actions and instructs us in the truth. The truth about Himself, and the truth He wants us to believe and walk in.

I will rejoice greatly in the LORD, My soul will exult in my God; For He has clothed me with garments of salvation, He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness, As a bridegroom decks himself with a garland, And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels. – Isaiah 61:10

For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. – Gal 3:27

Instead, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus, the Messiah, and do not obey your flesh and its desires. – Rom 3:14

Then, once we have humbly received this disciplining he clothes us with His Son, Jesus Christ. He places garments upon us that He himself has made (through shedding the blood of His Son for our atonement). Naturally we need to let go of the flimsy fig leaves of our own design in order to truly receive the garments of His design. Garments that can truly cover our nakedness. Garments that can truly set us free from shame. Once He has clothed us with Christ, we are free again to enjoy His presence and love.

If you have never truly experienced this spiritually then it will be very difficult for you (if not impossible) to truly experience God’s love as a vibrant reality in your life. You may have believed that Jesus clothes you as a spiritual truth, but you may not have truly faced God and let him actually heal you from the things that keep you from experiencing His loving presence. Which means that although you are clothed with Christ in spirit, you have not truly entered into this revelation experientially. It is still an objective truth rather than a subjective reality for you.

So, how would you know if you have actually experienced this healing or not? You will know. The difference is like night and day.

If you have never truly experienced this healing in your inner being, you will no doubt continue to experience shame, fear, depression, doubt, unworthiness, self-rejection, mistrust, and a range of other things that are evident of separation from God.

If you have experienced even a small measure of this healing you will experience an overwhelming sense of peace, as well as a deep sense of God’s pleasure. You will experience God smiling at you and it will fill you with a peaceful joy that cannot be explained. The center of your being will be filled with an experience of God’s loving pleasure.

The journey towards maturity is for every part of our inward person to go through this healing process so that our entire being may be found in His loving presence until we are completely rooted and grounded in His love (Eph 3:17).

So how do you take a journey towards experiencing this healing…. we will begin to look at that in our next set of blog posts.

If you have ever experienced the healing discussed in this blog post, please share your testimony in the comments section below. It will be very helpful for those who are on this healing journey.

If you would like to engage with me on a more one on one basis about what you have read or about your current and unique situation, please feel free to email me at dhcromhout@gmail.com.

This blog post is the 6th in a series. Click on the links below to see the rest:

  1. Step 1 – Let the Lord love you.
  2. How to let the Lord love you?
  3. How to let the Lord love you? – Just Ask!
  4. How to let the Lord love you? – Faith
  5. How to let the Lord love you? – Repentance

How to let the Lord love you? – Repentance

In my previous blog post about learning to let the Lord love you, I talked about the necessity of faith when it comes to receiving the Lord’s love. Initially I included a section about repentance for those who struggle with actually receiving faith to believe into and experience God’s love. However, after publishing the post I thought about it and decided to rather use a separate post to focus on it.

We have come to see that in order to enter into and receive God’s love we need to have faith. And as we discussed last time, “Faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ” (Rom 10:17).  In order to receive the faith to believe into and receive God’s love we need to hear the truth about God’s love spoken to us by the Lord Jesus, and we need to hear it in our inner being.

But what if we are unable to truly open our hearts to the inward speaking of the Lord Jesus regarding God’s love? What if we open our minds to hear, but for some reason we cannot truly open our hearts to hear through the word of Christ…. We hear His words spoken to us, sung about, we read about it in books and have friends tell us about God’s love, but for some reason these truths do not sink down into our spirits and produce the faith we need to enter into and receive God’s love.

In such cases we need to hear the first words Jesus spoke when he began his ministry…

“Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand” (Matt 3:2).

We all come with baggage. We all have had experiences in our lives that have taught us to believe in certain ways. And this is especially true for what we believe about God.

If for example we had unloving parents, our hearts may automatically believe the same about God. These lies then stand in the way of us being able to believe anything else about God. And Jesus knows this about us. That is why His first words to us are…

“Repent!””Change your mind about God, for what you always thought was true, is not…””In fact, His kingdom is right here, it has come near you. He wants to know you…”

The Lord cannot fill a house that is already full. If our hearts are full of lies about God then we first need to give up those lies before He can fill us with the truth. We first need to repent from what we have believed and ask God to forgive us for believing those lies about Him for so long. Only once we have truly repented and rejected those lies and been set free from Satan’s dark grip on our hearts can we truly begin to receive the Lord’s inward speaking and gain faith to believe and enter into God’s love.

If you are at this place I suggest that you repent. And if you are struggling to do so on your own, I suggest spending some time with a brother or sister that can help you do so and even minister to you in the spirit. Someone that can help you become free from the lies and the bonds that Satan has used to ensnare your heart for so long. Once your house is clean, you will be able to receive the Lord’s inward speaking, gain faith, and enter into a lifelong journey of enjoying His love for you. And you will come to see and experience as many dear believers have, that this love will forever change you. You will never be the same again. For there is nothing sweeter than being found in His love.

If you have ever had to repent and be set free from lies that you believed about God, please share your testimony in the comments section below….

This blog post is the 5th in a series. Click on the links below to see the rest:

  1. Step 1 – Let the Lord love you.
  2. How to let the Lord love you?
  3. How to let the Lord love you? – Just Ask!
  4. How to let the Lord love you? – Faith

How to let the Lord love you? – Faith

A few years ago I started a series of blog posts called “How to let the Lord love you.” However, soon after starting this series I took a break from blogging, so I never actually completed the series. Now that I have started blogging again, three people that I know are on a journey of learning to let the Lord love them, so I thought it would be a good time to add some thoughts to the topic.

In the previous post I dealt with learning how to ask the Lord to love us in the ways that we desire to enjoy His love. In this post I would like to discuss the importance of “faith” when it comes to letting the Lord’s love in.

The first thing we need to understand about the Lord’s love is that it is a reality whether we experience it or not. God is love (1 John 4:8). So His love towards us is not based on how He feels today. It is who He is. Thus, for His love towards us to end, He would have to end, and as I’m sure we all know, that is not possible.

What does change however is the degree to which we experience His love. And that is determined by our faith.

Faith is required to enter into or receive anything from God.

“But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.” (James 1:7-8)

“And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6)

Jesus also portrayed this aspect of relating to God during his earthly ministry. His miracles were generally a response to the faith of the people who came to him to be healed. He would often comment on their level of faith or ask them why they lacked faith. Much of his teaching towards the disciples was also based on encouraging them to have faith. Jesus taught us clearly that the degree to which we believe is the degree to which we will receive… (#cliche, but true)

According to Paul we have been blessed in Christ with EVERY spiritual blessing in the heavenly places (Eph 1:3). That includes grace, and mercy, and strength, and courage, and endurance, and kindness, and longsuffering, and boldness, and peace, and righteousness, and holiness, and the list is endless. Everything that is true of God is available to us in Christ. We have been given all these wonderful spiritual realities in Christ when we received Him. And for that reason we can enter into and experience them in increasing measures as we allow the Lord to grow in us…. as we allow him to permeate our being with the character and nature of God. We can be transformed by all these realities as we open to the Lord and appropriate them by faith.

And of course, this is also true for LOVE. I would say, that love is the foundation of all these realities. Love is the greatest of all the gifts (1 Cor 13). Without love, the other gifts don’t really make sense and don’t really function effectively. Love is the pinnacle of God’s person. But just like all the other aspects that are in Him, we need faith to enter into, experience, and enjoy it. But how do we do that?

“Faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ” (Rom 10:17).

Faith is enabled in us when we HEAR the truth. But not just by our physical ears, but in our spirits. That is why the scripture says we need to hear through the word of Christ. We hear the truth in our hearts when the Lord Jesus himself speaks to our inner person. It is only through His words that faith comes….

This inward speaking can come as a result of many different things. Sometimes it is through reading the bible, or hearing a testimony, or reading a book, or meditating on the truth, and so forth. But generally it comes as a result of engaging intentionally with the truth. Opening our hearts to receive the truth and allowing ourselves to take an inward posture of letting the Lord speak to us. If our hearts are truly open to the truth and we even seek the Lord’s inward speaking, then He will speak to us in such a way that produces faith and enables us to believe.

If you are ready to allow the Lord to fill you with faith to believe into and experience His love, then I would recommend that you posture your heart to receive that and ask the Lord to lead you to the truths that He wants you to receive. These may come from books about His love, reading the scriptures that talk about His love, spending time with brothers and sisters that will love you and minister His love to you, listening to and meditating on music that speaks about His love, and so on. There are so many ways in which you can grow in His love. Just let him take you on a journey of receiving and enjoying His love. He is the master at wooing our hearts. If you let Him, He will truly sweep you off your feet. 🙂

If you have heard the inward speaking from the Lord Jesus and gained faith to believe into and experience God’s love, please share about it in the comment section below.

This blog post is the 4th in a series. Click on the links below to see the rest:

  1. Step 1 – Let the Lord love you.
  2. How to let the Lord love you?
  3. How to let the Lord love you? – Just Ask!