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Resting in God’s Love - Wholly Loved - January 28

Resting in God’s Love

By Jennifer Slattery

“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.” 1 John 4:16

For a long time, I held a skewed view of God and His love. I lived as if He somehow loved me more when I behaved a certain way and less when I messed up. 

Then, at a women’s retreat, I heard about Jesus’ encounter with a Samaritan woman. “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink,” He said, “you would have asked Him and He would have given you living water” (John 4:10). He was offering her salvation, yes, but His invitation involved so much more. He was drawing her into an intimate, authentic relationship with Himself.

I, too, wanted to be filled, but I felt so empty, and I couldn’t understand why. I had trusted Christ for my eternal salvation. So why wasn’t my heart like a bubbling spring that welled up with eternal life?

The next morning, I walked the monastery grounds, hoping to hear from God. But I didn’t hear a thing. Frustrated, I cried out, “Why won’t You love me?!”

His response, though not audible, came swift and clear: “You won’t let Me.”

Confused, I spent the next six months or so prayerfully trying to figure out what God meant. He showed me that my disconnect came not from Him but from within me. My failure to grasp the depths of His love, my continual expectation of rejection, and past wounds that left me closed in and fearful, hindered my ability to fully experience Him. I was approaching Him through a lens of hurt instead of one of grace and truth.

I needed to learn how to give and receive love, and so I asked Him to teach me. Over the next ten years or so, that’s precisely what He did. He slowly but steadily healed my heart, removed my distrust, and replaced all the lies I’d melded with truth.

Truth like:

God is love (1 John 4:8), and His love is eternal (Psalm 136:1b). It doesn’t increase when I return it or decrease when I push Him away. 

His love doesn’t depend on us. The next time you’re struggling to rest in God’s love, hit pause. Ask Him to show you the cause of your disconnect and the lies you’ve embraced. Ask Him to help you replace them with truth. Ask Him to remind you of His truth again and again until it permeates your every thought, until His truth speaks louder than your deception.

Jennifer Slattery is a writer, editor, speaker, and the founder of Wholly Loved Ministries. She writes for Crosswalk, iBelieve is a multi-published author of Hometown Healing among other titles who also writes articles, Bible studies, and devotions. When not writing, reading, or editing, Jennifer loves going on mall outings with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband. Visit her online at or book her for your next women’s event.

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