“Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his steadfast love endures forever.”
Psalm 136:26, NKJV
I have been working on a novel that is inspired by my grandmother’s life story. As I was writing one of the chapters, I had a flashback to when she would visit home from her job at a plastic plant in New Jersey. She would always bring back these colorful plastics – like cups, bowls, and utensils. I loved those things. They were just plastic but they represented something more. It was a symbol that she was thinking of me when she was up North. She migrated there in the 1960s and I rarely saw her, but each time she came home, I looked around for what colorful items would be sticking out from among her things. And, each time she started passing out the gifts, I felt a bit closer to her. She always demonstrates her love with simple, small but meaningful gifts and acts, like sending birthday cards.
So, what makes these simple acts of love so powerful, especially nowadays in our materialistic culture, where price tags are often measures of worth and love. How does a woman use a few pieces of cheap plastic and greeting cards to make one feel like the most special person in the world? And what does this have to do with the way God loves us?
Like a good grandmother, God consistently loves us. Regardless of what is going on in her life, my grandmother stops and takes the time to send us each birthday cards. And, when you hang around her long enough, even when she appears occupied, she finds a way to demonstrate love. One way she does this is by being an active listening. She puts her introversion to good use. God does the same thing. No matter how much we put on God’s plate, God continues to love us. God does not let anything stop the love from flowing.
Like a good grandmother, God doesn’t show any favorites. Each year, I feel like the most special person in the world when I see a birthday card. My grandma does this for everyone. Although sometimes it seems like others are receiving more favor from God, that is not the case. God loves us individually but God does not love us unequally. God loves each of each, exactly the way we need to be love, without diminishing that love no matter who we are or what we’ve done. Even when we are sinful, ungrateful, undeserving, and disobedient, God loves us equally.
Finally, like a good grandmother, God is always on time. Even though my grandmother now lives in a nursing home after having survived a stroke that doctors predicted would kill her, her cards always arrive on time. God’s timing in the demonstration of love is always perfectly timed. Unlike the mail, which may not always deliver, God always delivers and God is always on time. Although the timing may not match ours, God’s timing is always perfect.
So, if ever you feel unloved. Remember that like a good grandma, God’s love is reliable. God’s love gives us equal opportunity to receive what we need. God’s love is always on time, even when it’s just in the nick of time.