Because of Me, Yet For Me

“The LORD has appeared of old to me, saying: "Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.”

Jeremiah 31:3  

In Israel this past week I was enjoying listening to our worship pastor share about his favorite part of the trip so far. He was sharing about one of those moments you pray everyone visiting the Holy Land has, a moment when the Lord Himself speaks to your heart something just for you. Sometimes that happens in a millisecond yet takes you days to wrap your mind around it. For Larry, our worship pastor, it happened as he looked out over the Mount of Olives, down the Garden of Gethsemene  towards the temple mount. He was seeing with his own eyes a view he knew he would see again one day when he returns in glory with the Lord at the Second Coming of Christ.

What was speaking to his heart the most was for the joy that Jesus suffered for our worship leader on a personal basis. Larry was very much cognizant of Jesus atoning sacrifice for the sins of the world but it hit him in such a profound way as he considered on such a deeper and more personal level, that Jesus died personally for my friend and had determined to do so before the foundation of the world.

Israel represents a land and a people who have been both chosen of God and for all in tense and purposes have rejected His love and care and still God in His infinite love for both the people and the land has not forsaken the apple of His eye. The book of Amos makes it perfectly clear, “I will plant them upon their own ground; never again shall they be plucked from the land I have given them, say I, the LORD, your God” (Amos 9:15).

Being Valentines Day its a wonderful time to remind you, loved one, that God’s plan for your life existed long before you did, before you were even born. God, like Israel has loved you with an everlasting love, a secure and sure love that has no beginning and no end. Walking in the land of Israel serves as a continual reminder that the plans of God for humankind are good regardless of the current circumstances any of us might face. We each were reminded with the visit to a new holy spot that God is always working for our good and His glory in all things.

As our worship leader was sharing with me his thought on the personal love of God for us His children the Lord brought these words below to my own mind. I could hear them in the form of a song paying in my head. I felt like I could sing along though I had never heard the arrangement prior to that moment. It was my own moment with the Lord, just being affirmed of His love for me. The word went like this…

“Because of me yet for me... I’ll never understand how you could find joy, bludgeoned by nails in your hands and feet

Driven by love you chose to die for me, buried so I could rise again...

No words can express the love you showed as your blood flowed down washing over me

Because of me yet for me…”  you left the heights of heaven and took on human form, God in flesh in all your glory yet fully man, so humble we heard the tears that fell to the ground…

“Because of me yet for me…”the tomb is empty but my heart and life they overflow.”

Because of God’s love the tomb is empty. Because the tomb is empty God’s love is personal. Because of me yet for He died and rose again so you and I could know the source and the goal of life. To know Jesus there is no greater joy, no greater love the world could ever know. Its Valentines Day today, a day to celebrate sacrificial love and no greater love has anyone than this that a man would lay down His life for His friends. Oh what a friend you have in Jesus today. May you know in a personal way the love of God for you that is discovered in Jesus Christ. May you like me know in a deeper way today, “Because of me yet for me...” the nature of of God’s love.

“God is love”

1 John 4:8


Michael Osthimer





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