Without even realizing it, you might be missing out.

There’s a huge difference between living for love and living in love.

First John 4:16 says:

And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.

We might think, well, God is love so He has no choice but to love us. We may even be convinced that if God’s nature didn’t require Him to love us, He probably wouldn’t love us that much. Deep down, some of us feel like we can increase His level of love by performing well. Is this your mindset? And its it causing you to live for His love.

The truth is we don’t deserve God’s love! His love for us has nothing to do with what we do for Him. It’s entirely about who He is!

Once you realize the amazing benefits of living in His love—you won’t want to miss them!

You’ll discover greater confidence. 1 John 4:17 says, This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus.

When you’re standing before Jesus, you won’t be worrying and wondering if you did enough to make Him love you. You’ll know that Jesus loves you perfectly and you can rest in His love. It’s a face-to-face, one-on-one conversation with Christ where He tells you how much He loves you. That’s incredible!

And when John says in that same verse, In this world we are like Jesus, that points to our Christ-likeness. Now, if you’re living for His love, you might think of Christ-likeness as a goal that you’re trying to achieve through your discipleship program. The more you do “x,” the more like Jesus you are. If you do “y,” then you’re not being like Jesus. It becomes this impossible standard that we’re always straining for. But that’s not what this verse says. It says when you realize you’re simply living in the love of God, that’s when you become more like Jesus.    

Why would that be?

When we realize how deeply we’re loved by Him, we’re free to be vulnerable, open, and honest. When we mess up, we don’t hide from Him. We seek His healing and direction for walking in holiness in the future. We rest in His love. 

First John 4:18 continues:

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

So resting in God’s love is a source of comfort. If you’re living for God’s love, there’s a lot of room for fear of punishment. If you’re not quite matching up, you fear punishment or that He might withhold His love. But living in His love means you don’t have to worry about that.   

And with that tremendous blessing of His unconditional love, we can carry on. Verse 19 says, We love because he first loved us. God has enabled us to love in a whole new way, giving the beautiful and free gift of undeserved love.

In or for? The difference changes so much. Don’t miss it.

How might your life be different if you knew how much God loved you? Request Pete Briscoe’s 6-message series How Much I’m Loved and learn more about the depth of God’s love – a love that will overwhelm you and transform how you view God, yourself, and others.