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God Got Personal

Ever notice how when your children were smaller you could get away with a lot more? You could spell things in front of them that you wanted to keep secret and hide their birthday presents at the top of your closet. And then when they got a little older, you could do what I used to do.

Every day I would write little notes and tuck them into their lunch boxes. Yep, for several years, when they were younger, as I'd finish making their lunches the night before, I'd take their folded napkin and jot down a quick little message like, "You're the coolest kid around!" or "I'm so glad you're MY son!" And of course there would be lots of happy faces and X's and O's in the corners. The kids liked getting them and I have to admit, I loved writing them. That is until my communiques ran into a bit of a snag.

Yes, I was totally caught off guard when, at the beginning of another school year, our oldest child said, as nonchalantly as she could, "Oh and Mom, you don't HAVE to write those little notes anymore." What?? I was crushed! It seemed some of her friends had begun making comments about the little "love notes from Mommy" ... and well, I guess that was my cue to stop (sniff). But I didn't let her get away that easily. Because we hadn't had that little "bonding time" in the middle of the day, the minute she got home from school I'd take her on my lap, wrap my arms around her, and hug her tight and tell her that I loved her. (In fact, snuggling up to my grown-up kids is something I still love to do!) Yep, I had to move beyond the "love on paper" approach and focus my love in person. And that's basically what God did through His Son, Jesus.

It's in the book of Hebrews that we find it was God Himself who was the One to fill the need and move from the "written" to the "personal". In fact, listen to His words to us, as taken from the 31st chapter of the book of Jeremiah and recorded in Hebrews.

"This new plan I'm making with Israel isn't going to be written on paper, isn't going to be chiselled in stone; this time I'm writing out the plan in them ... They'll get to know Me firsthand ... They'll get to know Me by being kindly forgiven, with the slate of their sins forever wiped clean." Hebrews 8:10, 12 (The Message)

Jesus... God's love up-close-and-personal. Not only was He the incarnation of God (God-in-flesh), He was the joy of God's smile, the comfort of His touch, the compassion in His tears. With the delivery of Grace, God got personal. And by coming to earth Himself, Jesus became God's love-note to mankind, hand-delivering the ultimate solution to our separation from God.

It's funny how that works... just like with our kids, while we may not always appreciate the depth and extent of His divine love, it is something we can always count on. No matter how old we get.

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God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him.
- James1:12 NLT
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Dear God, sometimes my "testing" season seems so long. Please give me courage to endure until the end. Help me not to bail! You said you would bless me for hanging in there - I will not give up on you or your promises. You are with me and will see me through this trial.