19We love Him because He first loved us. (1 John 4:7-21)


It’s amazing how we miss the truth of this simple and straightforward scripture. God doesn’t love us for what we do—we love God for what He’s done for us. All error in spiritual matters hinges on this point.

Everything we do must be in response to God’s love, not to obtain it. Any good deed, regardless of its merit, can be rendered unacceptable to God if our motives are to obtain His favor through what we do. He doesn’t relate to us based on our performance. Praise Jesus! God commended His love to us while we were still sinners (Rom. 5:8). He loves us because He is love, not because we are lovable.

Only when we appreciate this unearned, unmerited love of God can we truly love Him in return. God is love (1 John 4:8) and all love comes from Him. Love doesn’t originate with us. We can only give love to the Lord and to others after we receive it from Him.

Relax! You don’t have to force yourself to love God. All you need to do is focus your attention on how much He loves you. As you begin to explore the depths of His love for you today, you will automatically begin to love Him in return. It’s inescapable. Instead of focusing on what you should be doing for the Lord, focus on what He’s already done for you. Then love and appreciation will flow freely from your heart toward your loving Father.