As a child I disobeyed my parents from time to time, just as any child does. Despite anything I did, they continued to love me. While as that young kid I may have lashed out with, “You don’t love me,” I didn’t ever doubt that they did. I was looking to hurt and few words hurt a parent more than those words. That’s why when we were young and our parents stood a firm line, those words were a powerful weapon at our disposal. With God, we can lash out with those same words. However, God’s love overcomes our disobedience; it covers over our sin. We may utter those words, the Enemy may cause us to think them, but they aren’t true.
Who is a God like you, pardoning iniquity and passing over transgression for the remnant of his inheritance? He does not retain his anger forever, because he delights in steadfast love. He will again have compassion on us; he will tread our iniquities underfoot. You will cast all our sins into the depths of the sea. You will show faithfulness to Jacob and steadfast love to Abraham, as you have sworn to our fathers from the days of old. – Micah 7:18-20, ESV
Despite our disobedience, God continues to love us. Paul reminds us in his letter to the Romans that while we were in the midst of our disobedience and completely alienated from Him, He went to the Cross for us. His love is a steadfast love. It isn’t dependent on what we do. His acceptance isn’t based on some sort of mythical scales weighing good deeds versus bad. His love is a part of who He is.
As a result, He pardons our iniquities. This isn’t just a past act. Pardoning and passing over means the action is ongoing. He doesn’t just ignore them. He treads them underfoot. He has compassion on us. He will not hold onto any deserved anger. He will release that anger because of that steadfast love. Such is the promise He makes towards those who believe in His Son.
This means we aren’t stuck in a performance test. That’s a very freeing thought. It means I can chose to obey because I love God, not because I have to do so. For most people, when there’s a choice between wanting to do and being required to do, they give better results when they want to do. That’s where God’s steadfast love places us. Life all around us may grade us, evaluate us, rank us, and try to tell us our worth by that constant “racking and stacking.” With God there is none of that. There is simply His steadfast love. There is always His steadfast love. Our worth is found in Him. We are His beloved children. That is our identity.
Whatever life throws at you, there is His steadfast love for you. Whether you score victory after victory or face defeat after defeat today, you remain in His steadfast love. Even if your interactions with others leave you wondering how people could be so mean to each other, He still hasn’t changed in His steadfast love for you. He won’t change. That’s why the prophet Micah referred to it as steadfast. We can count on it, even if it feels like we can’t count on anything else. He loves us with a steadfast love. How amazing!