The best feeling in the world is knowing that people actually like you.
People have told me in the past that I should not be concerned about having friends or getting people to like me. They said that if I can make peace with the fact that God loves me, then people will like me more. They also told me that I didn’t need friends because God was supposed to be enough.
Then they would plan parties and invite everybody but me.
So, God is supposed to be enough for me, but you get to have oodles of friends. Makes sense.
I tried to explain to them that in order for me to feel like God liked me, I needed to know that His people liked me too. Because His people are supposed to be an expression of Him, and if His people don’t like me, then how the heck would I ever get the idea that HE liked me? If His people don’t like me, then there’s a pretty good chance He doesn’t like me either — because He’s supposed to be making people like Him right? And if He’s not causing them like me, then He must not like me either.
Or else they’re just being hypocrites with their sermons on how I need to know God loves me and be happy with that when they themselves are free to find love and acceptance in whatever and whomever they please.
I did get to a spot where I felt the Lord’s deep, unending, compassionate love. It was truly amazing. It is thrilling and beautiful. It revolutionized my life.
The problem was that it proved the claims of those people to be completely false. The more I felt adored by God, the more people resented me. I felt confident. People resented that. I was motivated to share His love. People resented that. I felt compelled to share in the suffering of His precious ones who were experiencing hardship. People resented that too.
The more love I felt from God, the more rejected and dejected I became.
I think it’s safe to say that the hypothesis that in order to receive human love, one must first receive the love of God is bogus — or at least completely backwards.
My Grandma makes me feel cherished. I saw her this past weekend, and it was lovely. Between several games of
Skipbo and hours of dishes and chores and just chatting, my love bucket slowly got filled.
I came home this afternoon and saw a few friends. They added drop after drop after drop to my love bucket. Laughs and jokes and great food and celebration and just being together — it all equals love.
And I realized that people actually like me!
At the end of the day, I drove home thinking about how I knew God loves me, and I felt compelled to worship. I knew God loves me because His people had shown me. When they took the time to be Jesus to me, that was when I was convinced again (because I’d given up after experiencing the cruelty of some who claimed to be Christians) that He really does adore me.