Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "In The Sweet By And By"1 (Lyrics)
I have always had a challenge understanding the idea of "infinity". Even as a child in science and math class, I had difficulty grasping infinite time or infinite space. So, too, with the love of God: I've heard many ministers and Sunday school teachers talk about the "infinite love of God", but although I am confident of this, I'm not sure that I really understand it. What does it look like? How does "infinite love" manifest itself?
Psalm 103:11,17 – For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him. From everlasting to everlasting the Lord's love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children's children. (NIV)
Recently, we have taken in a rescue dog, a dog that would otherwise have been euthanized. Now, we already have a dog — a dog that I am very committed to. When the new dog came home, the old dog had her nose out of joint, probably because she now had to share our attention with someone else. But honestly, I had issues, too. I was accustomed to focusing my attention on one animal, and now, I had to focus on two. It was a challenge! I started talking to other people: folks who have two pets and have made it work.
I also talked to my sister, who has two children, both now grown adults. I asked her how it was when the younger child came home. Did she feel that she was now having to ration her love and give each child only half? "No," she said with a gentle laugh. "That's not how love works. Your love just expands to fill the need." And with that simple concept, I learned something important. I began doing more research online into the expanding love of God.
Perhaps you could try this prayer exercise that I have found helpful. Begin by being aware of yourself, and feel the love of God surrounding you and permeating you. Breathe it in fully, and be grateful for it. Then, extend your thinking: add someone else to your thoughts, perhaps a friend or loved one, and as you do so, feel the love of God expanding to encompass this other person also. Continue doing this, extending your thoughts to include other people or situations, and feel God's love expanding each time. The beautiful thing is that you can add any situation or person you want — troubling situations, difficult issues, people with challenges — and the love of God expands as needed.
Romans 5:20 – The law was added so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more. (NIV)
Prayer: Dear God, we thank You for Your love for us and for all Your people. Help us, as we pray, to learn more about You, to feel Your love more fully, and to deepen our faith. We pray in the holy and precious name of Jesus. Amen.