When you’re going through a season of pain–whether it’s emotional, physical or spiritual–you can easily lose your ability to respond to your situation well. The sheer relentlessness of hardship can disable you in a number of ways. Maybe if you could get some relief, you would be okay, but at times no form of true abatement comes.
It can be hard to understand God’s mercy at times like these. In our human perspective, we can find it difficult to understand how love could be consistent with failing to supply the object of one’s love with a break when they’re struggling. But, perhaps this shows our mistaken ideas about love–at least, when it comes to God.
We must know that love is not relative to us in the context of our relationship with God. God is Love, so love is relative to Him. We are the objects He has chosen to project His love onto, but we are not objects in the sense that we excited His love. Because Love is who God is, when He addresses us, He does so in absolute consistency with who He is.
But we cannot look at how God loves us, judging it according to what we deem as loving. Love starts with His heart, not with us. Love is best understood by God and must be introduced to us. We come into the arrangement because God welcomes us to be a part of it. We do not deserve love, we gratefully receive it.
If we don’t understand how God’s love applies in a certain situation, we can ask Him. Most important in our asking is the desire to know how God means to relate to us in the midst of what may be painful circumstances. We do not need our situation to feel loving to know the One who is Love while we’re it.