For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. -John 3:16 (NIV)
There’s a sweet bedtime picture board book I highly recommend to any parent of a young one, called Guess How Much I Love You. And if you’ve ever read a favorite story to a young child, you can be sure that you’ll read it so many times that you’ll know the story by heart.
In it, Little Nutbrown Hare is getting ready for bed. But before he does, he wants to express to Big Nutbrown Hare just how much he loves him. He stretches out his arms, reaches as high as he can, hops, and even says he loves Big Nutbrown Hare all the way down the lane as far as the river. But no matter what Little Nutbrown Hare expresses, his daddy shows him that he loves him far more than even that.
At this point, Little Nutbrown Hare can barely keep his eyes open. Before he dozes off, he looks up into the night sky, and tells his daddy that he loves him right up to the moon. Oh, that’s far. After Big Nutbrown Hare settles his son into his bed of leaves and kisses him goodnight, he whispers, “I love you right up to the moon…and back.”
My son calls me Big Nutbrown Hare and himself Little Nutbrown Hare, which is very, very sweet. But I tell him that we both share a Father who loves us far more than we can ever imagine.
We have a Father who so loved all of us, that even as we lived in sin, He sent His Son down here to die for the forgiveness of our sins. To make a way for us to be with Him in Heaven. All we have to do is accept Him in our hearts.
To the moon and back is far, indeed. But we share a Father with a depth of love so unfathomable that we cannot even begin to measure it. But we can rest in it…abide in it…and in the promises of a loving Father who has plans to prosper us, and not to harm us. Hang in there. You are so, so loved.
“Good Good Father” as performed by MercyMe praises Our Father, who loves us and who makes us loved.