After a cold, rainy, windy, bleary winter, I welcome the signs of spring with open arms. The bright pops of yellow in clusters of daffodils, the tentative pink clusters of cherry blossoms, the days when the sun is actually providing a little warmth; lately, I’ve felt struck by the unnecessary beauty of these things.
I’ve felt that in these “extras” is bound the loving kindness of God as he shows us his kindness and mercy in a million beautiful colors and ways. That he made so many marvelous things leaves me in awe. That he created food to not only provide nourishment, but to also be interesting and delicious fills me up. That he placed intricacies into the people around me that point to who he is astounds me.
Our heavenly Father, in his great kindness, loves to give us good gifts! The gifts of beauty in creation, the gifts of friendship and fellowship with others, the gifts of laughter.
“Every good thing given and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shifting shadow.” James 1:17 NASB
And when I think of the greatest gift He gave us, I overflow with reverential wonder . He gave to us the gift of his Son’s life. In his kindness, God allowed Jesus to enter into our world, and redeem us from our sins. This in itself would certainly have been far more than we deserve. Yet God doesn’t stop there.
I recently attended an event called The Freedom Project featuring speaker and author Jennie Allen. She focused her presentation on pointing to the gospel and explaining it through the scriptures. Towards the end, she said something striking as she explained God’s plan for eternity. “He [God] could have made us slaves. He could have saved us, but made us slaves, but instead He made us coheirs.” Coheirs. Wow! How unnecessary and extravagant.
In his kindness, God has gone over the top for us. He made the earth for our enjoyment. He created an eternity and He wants us to be part of it! Forever.
“But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.” Titus 4:3-7 (NIV)
Generous. Extravagant. Kind. That’s the God I worship and look forward to the privilege of eternal life with. That’s the God I love.