See what love the Father has given to us, that we should be called the children of God. For this reason the world knows us not, because it knew him not.
1 John 3:1 (DARBY)
Life will get rough. Things will not go as anticipated; as planned, as you feel you deserved. Know this…at the best times in your life; at every other moment in your life, You Are Loved.
It is easy to believe that no one has ever struggled this hard. It is easy to believe that all around you people are succeeding, achieving dreams, moving forward while you are mired in fear, failure, depression. It is easy to find reasons not to try again, but for every so-called good reason, know this, You Are Loved. Do Anyway.
In his commentary on 1 John 3:1, biblical scholar Matthew Henry writes about the Christian struggle, saying,
Little does the world know of the happiness of the real followers of Christ. Little does the world think that these poor, humble, despised ones, are favourites of God, and will dwell in heaven. Let the followers of Christ be content with hard fare here, since they are in a land of strangers, where their Lord was so badly treated before them.
Why should we be content? Because we are so greatly loved. Look at the community that surrounds you, even that you were brought to this place at this time to read these words of encouragement. You Are Loved. God Loved you so dearly that he claimed you by name as His Own. I know it’s hard; I know because I have lived through hard, am living through hard, and even so, I can say in the words of Job, “though he slay me, yet will I hope in him…” Job 13:15 (NIV)
Know that You Are Loved. Even on my worst days, when I struggle with both "how to" and "why should I", I can list a praise.
I woke up this morning.
I was in my right mind.
I got dressed, and had clothes to wear.
I put on shoes.
I walked my dog, worshiping in the open air,
my silly doggy’s delight at simple things;
dew on the grass, new smells, new sights.
More than any of these things, I remember that I am abundantly loved, so much so that My Father gave His First and Only Begotten Son that you and I might be saved. Hold up your head. Keep Going. Be Encouraged. Never forget how precious you are to He Who Created You. You Are THAT Loved.