Loving God is based on the truth of who He is and what He’s done, but it’s not limited to that.

Is God’s Love More than a Feeling?

by Adam Wittenberg
6/4/15 Christian Living

Loving God is based on the truth of who He is and what He’s done, but it’s not limited to that.

God’s love is both a fact and an experience—it’s true whether we feel it or not, but our awesome God allows us to both know Him and feel His presence, so we don’t have to choose one over the other!

You can think of God as a parent who you know you can run to for help. Jesus even tells us to approach God as Father, or “Daddy,” in the Lord’s Prayer (Matthew 6:9–13).

Imagine that you are a small child playing outside and you have a bad fall. Bleeding and in pain, you start to cry. But before you have the chance to go and find help, a thought comes to you: you are close to home, and your dad and mom are there. You know that when you see them, they will comfort and care for you, helping you heal from your wounds.

This thought alone brings you comfort. Maybe you cry a little less, or even start to smile as you hurry back home. You haven’t seen your parents yet, or heard their voices, but just knowing who they are and how they love you brightens your spirit.

But it gets even better.

At home, your father and mother embrace you, comfort you, and bandage your wounds. They care for you and stay close by you until you’re able to rest—maybe even tucking you into bed. And through the night and in the morning they check on you, making sure you are well and that you’re feeling better.

It’s similar with God.

Just remembering who He is—His love, compassion, and strength—comforts us. He has saved us (Ephesians 1:13), adopted us (Romans 8:15), and loved us with the very same love that Jesus and the Father share (John 15:9).

We know that our Father can fix things, that in His “presence is fullness of joy” (Psalm 16:11), and that Jesus is coming again for us (John 14:3).

But we’re not limited to simply thinking about or remembering God; we can ask Him for things with confidence that He hears us and knows our needs (Matthew 6:8). And so when we think of Him, it should prompt us to thank Him for who He is—which breaks off heaviness—and then ask for what we need, be it comfort, provision, or a greater experience of His love.

Jesus says, “If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him!” (Matthew 7:11).

God’s love doesn’t change—He loves with 100-percent intensity 100 percent of the time. His love is not based on our actions, performance, or circumstances (think of how Joseph felt all those years in prison!). Even if we don’t feel His love right now, it hasn’t changed.

If sin or guilt is weighing you down, repent and turn back to God wholeheartedly. Jesus is our sympathetic high priest, so let us “come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:14–16).

God comforts us with both knowledge of who He is and experiential knowledge—living revelation. The all-powerful God of the universe is so much more than a feeling, but He does want to touch our emotions so that we can love Him with all of our heart, soul, mind, and strength (Luke 10:27).

It doesn’t require having butterflies in your stomach, and it isn’t limited to those with a “feeling” personality—God will fill the hungry with knowledge and experience of Him, touching each of us in specific ways with His amazing and personal love!

As Christians, we don’t have to limit our relationship with God to either thinking about or feeling His love—He wants us to be rich in both.

As we pray Ephesians 1:17–19 and 3:16–19, we will be “rooted and grounded in love” with all the believers, so that we can know and experience “how wide and long and deep and high” is God’s love.

What do you think? Is God’s love more than a feeling to you?

Adam Wittenberg


    A Detroit native who was raised in Vermont and Connecticut, Adam worked as a newspaper journalist until 2012, when he moved to Kansas City to complete the Intro to IHOPKC internship. Afterwards, he earned a four-year certificate in House of Prayer Leadership from IHOPU and is now on full-time staff in the Marketing department at IHOPKC. He also serves in the NightWatch (overnight prayer hours) and is active in evangelism. He, and his wife Stephany, have a vision to reach people everywhere with the good news of Jesus Christ.

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