The only glimpse we get in this life of true unconditional love is for our children. When God looks at you, it is with the same unconditional love.
Let’s take a brother, sister, spouse, etc. These loves, while tremendous as they are, unfortunately are still conditional. By way of example, let’s say a brother whom you love, harms one of your children in some way. Well guess what, you will find that there are conditions to the love of that brother, and it will probably forever change your relationship with that brother. You see where I am going with this.
With your children, the love is perfect, all forgiving and literally unconditional. The child could do every bad thing possible and even land in prison but even then, you will still tell them you love them.
When God looks at you, it is with that all forgiving love that never changes regardless of your actions. His love is the place of refuge that is always there and always welcoming and always consistent. It simple never changes.
The story of the prodigal son is a very powerful image. When the son has done everything to push the father away, the father is still waiting and watching and searching for his son to come home. Not home in the literal sense, rather home to his forgiving love. At the end of the story, the bible says the father sees his son from a far off and runs to meet him. The only way the father could see his son from a far off is because he was continually searching and waiting for his son to make the decision to come home to his love. It is one of the most beautiful stories ever written about what true unconditional love looks like. In the story the father is God and the son coming home, is you.
Like in the story, it doesn’t matter how far you have gone and how deep the chasm, God still waits. The interesting imagery of the story is that God runs to the son once he made the decision to come home. The father didn’t stand on the porch and make the son crawl all the way to his feet to ask forgiven. No, the father saw the son’s decision and ran to meet him. You could be in the depths of trouble and despair, but the image of the story is that God meets you right where you are. KT