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Love Beyond Behavior

“When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things. Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.” 1 Corinthians 13:11–12 NLT

I was completely caught off guard last week as my sweet grandson loudly displayed his “terrible twos” attitude. Even though he had many toys to pick from, he wanted to play with something that he shouldn’t have. He hollered and pulled on my pant leg hoping I would give in. Even though he acted up, my love for him didn’t change. I continued to provide and care for him like I do every time he’s with me.

His little tantrum reminded me of Numbers 14 when the children of Israel displayed their ‘terrible twos’ attitude in the desert. Even though God cared for and provided for them, they were ungrateful to the point that their grumbling and complaining made their prior slavery sound like a picnic. They couldn’t see how much God knew and loved them.

you can live in freedomGod’s love and concern didn’t waiver, even though they displayed ungrateful and selfish attitudes. It’s the same for us—He doesn’t love us more when we please Him or less when we fail.

When you don’t see God providing or moving the way you think He should, refrain from grumbling and complaining. Instead thank Him for where you are. God is love, He knows us completely, and He is committed to our well-being. You can live in slavery or in freedom—the perspective is your choice.

Lord, I’m grateful that You love me unconditionally even when I grumble and complain about where I am. Help me replace my complaints with heartfelt thanksgiving. Amen.

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