Worthy of Love

January 2017

Wow. What a start to 2017. 

Rusty and I have grown so much the past couple of years. It's crazy to think we have now been in Miami for over a year and a half! :) It really is beginning to feel like home. 

This last week Rusty and I celebrated our birthdays. His on the 25th and mine on the 28th. Woop Woop. 

I have to take a minute to breathe and say. WOW. 

Guys, it's amazing how our lives have changed within a year. At this point last year we were just starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel with all of my health issues This year we had 2 celebrations with our friends and between the two we had over 25 FRIENDS celebrate with us. And not just acquaintances, but FRIENDS!  

This was the best birthday gift we could have received. We both just couldn't stop talking about it. It's amazing to see how these relationships have developed within the last year. 

To some of you this may seem insignificant, but to many of you who have moved away and started fresh know the significance of this. It's HUGE! And honestly, it's life changing. 

I can't believe it. Well I can. God is good and my husband is a relational guru ;) In fact, just this morning I was so touched. 

We were leaving the gym after a workout and as Rusty goes to get in the car he realizes he cannot open the door. Someone hit our car while we were inside working out-they didn't tell us. But before I could even start crying (yes I know, what a girl), we had friends jumping in helping us out. One of them was a lawyer who took matters into his own hands and started calling friends and looking for cameras. Then we had a friend start putting two and two together and saw a huge semi that was sitting in the parking lot next to us and found our paint on his car. Then the lawyer approached the guys to get their insurance and since they were denying they did he, he just automatically called the cops. Then we had so many friends come by to check on us and just talk through the annoyance of it all.

I was SO TOUCHED. None of these people even paused a moment to think about the time it was going to take them to help us out. They just went straight into action. That was SO special to me. 

Yes, I'm super sentimental and sappy at times, but if you understand Miami and you understand the business world for many of these people, sacrificing time is HUGE. 

Community was the hardest part about moving here. We came knowing few people and those we did know, we had only met a couple of times. Now we have friends from all our circles of life, the church, our neighbors, the gym, and my clients. It's a blessing. And it's such a reminder to me. 

People are what really matters. 

I mean think about it. God didn't come to save the animals or the plants or any material item. He came to save his people and all people. 

If you didn't know I recently got a tattoo-it was my birthday gift. It reads "Worthy of Love" 

If you've followed our journey it might make sense if not, here it is in a nutshell. We went through hell when we first got married. For years I have struggled with depression and anxiety. The biggest source of that anxiety was pleasing people. Through that I would find myself caught up in finding my worth in what I did in order to make people happy. I had a REALLY hard time grasping that I could be loved. I had a hard time grasping that I had any worth at all. I felt worthless. On top of that-grasping God's UNCONDITIONAL love seemed insane to me. I could not wrap my mind around it. 

I have always heard that saying "You are nothing without God". Well I think I interpreted that as "I am nothing". But there's a second part "without God". This is not just as a believer with a relationship with God, but removing God completely from the equation as if He didn't even EXIST. 

Here's the kicker. God does exist. He is real. And because of that I AM LOVED. Because of that YOU ARE LOVED. 

It's the Gospel. He sent Jesus for all because He loves us ALL. He believes we are SO VALUABLE and SO WORTHY of that LOVE that he sent his one and only Son to die on a cross for us, and not only die, but bear the weight of ALL sin. WOO. 

This hit me so hard. When I denied my worth, I denied God's love. I denied God. (If that's not humbling I don't know what is). 

It's simple. 

We hear this verse so often growing up. Then we get older and think it's overused or something like that's a child's memory verse. But the Gospel is explained so clearly in this one verse:

"For God so LOVED the WORLD that he gave his one and only Son, so that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life"

John 3:16

God came for the WORLD to show them his love. He declared us worthy. He declared us loved. And it's not just me, and it's not just you. It's men and women like Paul who persecuted the church, murdered others. He came for those like David who committed adultery. He came for those who turned their back on him for those like Jonas who deliberately disobey him. He came for ALL. He loves us ALL. That's the reminder I want everyday. That's what I want my life to reflect-a love so deep that is passes all understanding.  

Jo ButlerComment