In chapel, Jerm told us what may be the most important thing we can hear about God. It’s something that took me a long time to discover, it’s something that revolutionized my life. Jerm said, God ______ you. Yeah, yeah, you may say, God loves me…I know it. No. God likes you.
There are probably people in your life that love you… and you know it. Love is so necessary. But love doesn’t fuel relationship and nearness in the same way that like does. God enjoys us, finds us interesting, wants to be around us. He pursues us, not to catch us in our sin, but to catch up with us, to come alongside, to know us better. Think about how it feels when you discover someone likes you, wants to spend time with you? What does it do to your desire to be even a better version of yourself? What does it do to help you share who you are and what you can do? Being liked makes us bloom and want to grow and grow up. It’s pretty important to have someone like you. Relationships with people who well express like for us fuel growth, they help make growing – which comes with its own set of pains – a more pleasant process.
People who like me (even though my worst traits are pretty obvious to them ) and often make clear to me that they do so – motivate me – to live better – to give them a better experience of me.
I mentor not because I love kids, but because I like them. Really. I do not relate to them out of “I should do this with you, for you”… out of some choice to do the right thing. I do it because I like being with them. I think that is the secret of any influence for good that I have had. I like young people. I act out of love toward them. The principles of love rule my interactions with them. But I like them – God has gifted me to really, genuinely like them.
When I think about God relating to me, I make myself think of my friends and the young people in my life. No one makes me do anything with or for them. I get to do so.
God calls us His friends. So it stands to reason and my experienced reality that He likes me.