There is nothing better than tucking my kids into bed after a long day and feeling like I loved them well. I will gladly toot my own horn after a full 24 hours of defusing meltdowns, keeping a reign on my temper, and showcasing the patience of a saint. But the truth is that those days are few and far between. More often than not, I end the day frazzled, exhausted, and wondering if I expressed my love well enough.
I wonder if when I yelled, “Don’t touch that! It’s hot!” my kids heard what I was trying to say: “I love you, and I don’t want you to get hurt.” I wonder if they’re going to grow up traumatized because I lost my temper when they were playing too rough and knocked over a picture frame. I wonder if I should have hugged them one more time before bed.
Some days I wonder if my kids felt loved enough, but I have never wondered if they actually were loved enough. I know exactly how overwhelming and unconditional the love I have for them is, no matter how they feel at the end of the day.
And God loves me the same way—regardless of how I feel at the end of the day.
I may not go to bed feeling treasured, valued, or respected. Sometimes the world leaves me feeling the exact opposite of those things. Sometimes I feel further away from God than I did when I woke up, but that doesn’t change how deeply loved I am by my Savior.
Recently God reminded me that my emotions are not meant to establish truth, they are meant to be driven by His truth.
Feeling alone, unclean, or unworthy does not make me those things. My emotions don’t get to determine my truth. Christ does, and He says that I am redeemed, significant, and righteous.
I no longer say, “I don’t know if I am worthy of Your love.” Instead, I come boldly before the throne and say, “God, today I don’t feel loved. But You have promised that You love me with an everlasting love. I choose to believe Your Words over mine.”
There are some days that I feel guilty for not loving my kids perfectly. But on those same days, I’m so thankful for a God who does.
For a God who fills my lack with His overflow.
For a God whose promises are mightier than my emotions.
And for a God who loves me regardless of how I feel about it.
“So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us.” – 1 John 4:16