Starting Place

For God so loved the world that he gave his only and unique Son, so that everyone who trusts in him may have eternal life, instead of being utterly destroyed.  John 3:16, CJB

The basis for our relationship with God rests solely on His Son.  We trust God that He accepts us on the basis of His love and mercy for us rather than on our pleasing Him or on our performance or on our keeping God’s laws.  Yes, God still calls us to obedience, but our obedience does not form the basis for our relationship with God.  God loves us regardless of what we have done, not because of what we have done.

We start with God’s love for us.  We can move on to pleasing Him and living for Him, to doing Kingdom work in His name and for His glory.  Yet, no matter how long we have believed in His Way and how much we have served Him, we still need to keep coming back to the Starting Place.

We are often tempted to think, “Oh, I know that.  I can move on.”  However, when we forget the Starting Place, we encounter our perfectionism, again.  We may think that we are all over our perfectionism, but we all too easily fall back into it.  We habitually think that we need to please God on our own power rather than simply to trust in His goodness and grace for us.

The Kingdom revolves around God’s work in the world.  We are His servants.  We have a part in the story.  God will utilize what we offer Him in faith.  However, God takes charge of the story.  It does not depend on us.  We can relax knowing that God will accomplish His purposes in the world.

Let us remember the Starting Place and keep coming back to it.  We can rest safely in our Father’s arms knowing that He includes us in His family because of His beloved Son.  We will get to live in His love forever and ever.  “For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39).