The Sustaining Love of God

by Beverly Hutchinson McNeff

When I was young, Easter was a big deal. We always got new outfits for church, and mine always included a hat or bow for my hair. Everyone I knew celebrated Easter with baskets, bonnets, and smiles.

But what about the people who lived during the time of Jesus? He was their savior, and he had been killed. In their minds, their hopes had been killed as well. His disciples not only could not save him; they actually abandoned him. They were frightened that they might be killed, too. They weren’t out shopping for Easter bonnets, and there wasn’t much to smile about.

You see, we know the end of the story. We know that there was nothing to fear. Death could not end love; the Son of God would arise in glory. However, the disciples and people of that time did not have that awareness. It’s easy not to fear when you know the outcome, isn’t it?

What do you fear in your life? You already know the outcome. You have been and forever will be sustained by the love of God. Now is the time to arise in glory and affirm this truth in the face of whatever is occurring. Life is not to be feared but lived and lived fully.

Jesus told us to be of good cheer, for he had overcome the world, and so can we. He was not just talking about the fact that death could not end life but that no matter what fear befalls us, we can move through it to the truth.

“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil; for thou art with me.” This is not just part of the 23rd psalm but a statement of truth. The “shadows of death” are the fearful thoughts that make us feel alone, and yet we are never alone. God is here and with us now.

As we enter the 7th week of our Lessons in Light, we focus on the resurrecting power that comes from the knowledge that “I am sustained by the Love of God.” As lesson 50 tells us,

“Only the Love of God will protect you in all circumstances. It will lift you out of every trial, and raise you high above all the perceived dangers of this world into a climate of perfect peace and safety. It will transport you into a state of mind that nothing can threaten, nothing can disturb, and where nothing can intrude upon the eternal calm of the Son of God.”

We may deny the truth and cower in fear, but that does not stop the fact that God is here and with us now. We know how the story turns out. The greatest threat of this world … death … was overcome by love. Do you not think, then, that love can overcome whatever is concerning you now? As lesson 50 goes on to say,

“Put not your faith in illusions. They will fail you. Put all your faith in the Love of God within you; eternal, changeless and forever unfailing. This is the answer to whatever confronts you today. Through the Love of God within you, you can resolve all seeming difficulties without effort and in sure confidence. Tell yourself this often today. It is a declaration of release from the belief in idols. It is your acknowledgment of the truth about yourself.”

“I am sustained by the love of God.” (ibid) You are sustained by the love of God. We are sustained by the love of God. It is time we let this idea sink into our minds for ourselves and all who walk this world with us. Let it become part of our “problem-solving repertoire” (W-194.6) and a quick reply to the fears of the world.

It is time we let the truth of God’s Love surround us “like a blanket of protection and surety.” We have let so many things in the world usurp the power of God’s Love. But lies can’t stop the power of God to transform your life into majesty. Therefore, “Let no idle and foolish thoughts enter to disturb the holy mind of the Son of God. Such is the Kingdom of Heaven. Such is the resting place where your Father has placed you forever.” (W-50)

Let us not dwell on the crucifixions in our lives but move on to the resurrection, the miracles that await us. You are sustained by the Love of God. There is nothing to fear. So, put on your Easter bonnet and smile!

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