This post is brought on by The Furious Longing of God by: Brennan Manning...
First of all, what does the furious longing of God mean to me? What does it mean to be longed after and loved by God in a furious way?
I have little idea.
Maybe I should have a better idea?
With some years of high school and college ministry and four years studying ministry at a Christian university "under my belt", maybe I should know more...Maybe my confidence should be a little higher...Maybe my doubt a little less...
But maybe not.
If I am honest, I have trouble knowing what it means to love God and be loved by Him...
Thankfully, my opinion and personal experience does not change the Truth that exists...The Truth that God seeks us with a furious longing so full of aching passion that it would literally crumble us if we were to experience it at capacity...God desires to be in this union with us, and the apostle Paul expressed this in Galatians when he says, "It is no longer I who lives, but Christ lives in me." (2:20)
"Jesus came not only for those who skip morning meditations, but also for real sinners, thieves, adulterers, and terrorists, for those caught up in sqaulid choices and failed dreams." (Manning 32)
"I have come to call not the self-righteous, but sinners." Matthew 9:13
For the longest time I put pressure on myself...If I missed daily quiet times or didn't feel as if my worship was authentic I beat myself up, adding to the guilt and fear already residing inside my head...Obviously those feelings are not of God...
My view of God was, and still is limited...I put his love in a box that was not fit to hold even the dirty laundry I take home to wash for free...I lived by the definition I made for something I was not created to define in the first place...
If I really think about it though, if I were to have power over God's love, then I should refuse to worship him, for he would be conditional and weak...
He is not though...He is the Great I Am, the Beginning and the End, and the greatest lover to ever exist...
I let my sin(s) be an excuse to run and just throw a few words at God every now and then, while pushing full steam ahead on a path I fashioned for myself out of less than gold...
"Those of us scarred by sin are called to closeness with Him around the banquet table. The kingdom of God is not a subdivision for the self-righteous or for those who lay claim to private visions of doubtful authenticity and boast they possess the state secret of their salvation.....The men and women who are truly filled with light are those who have gazed deeply into the darkness of their own imperfect existence." (Manning 32)
"I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God."
The love of Christ is beyond knowledge. Let go of your tiny, weak, circumcised, traditionalist, legalistic, human perception of God and open yourself to a God in Jesus Christ, the most loving man to walk this green earth...
While it is good and Godly to pursue a thoughtful life as a man/woman of God, take the pressure off yourself, please...Just shut up and shut off and sit for a second...
Let God love you where you are at.
Not where you think you should be.
Accept that it is real, no matter what you have or haven't done.
If you don't understand it, then consider yourself normal, and don't be discouraged...Ask for God to reveal his love to you...
Chances are that he has already been anyways, you have just been missing it...
Don't fret though, for He is continuing to pursue you with the most furious love.
And He will never stop.
The love of God is greater far
Than tongue or pen can ever tell;
It goes beyond the highest star,
And reaches to the lowest hell;
The guilty pair, bowed down with care,
God gave His Son to win;
His erring child He reconciled,
And pardoned from his sin.
When years of time shall pass away,
And earthly thrones and kingdoms fall,
When men, who here refuse to pray,
On rocks and hills and mountains call,
God’s love so sure, shall still endure,
All measureless and strong;
Redeeming grace to Adam’s race—
The saints’ and angels’ song.
Could we with ink the ocean fill,
And were the skies of parchment made,
Were every stalk on earth a quill,
And every man a scribe by trade,
To write the love of God above,
Would drain the ocean dry.
Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
Though stretched from sky to sky.
O love of God, how rich and pure!
How measureless and strong!
It shall forevermore endure
The saints’ and angels’ song.