We’ve got this little board book at our house. I think Rich picked it up one day in Wal-Mart. I love the artwork in this book. I love the big smiles on all the children’s faces. They’re smiling because they know one thing: Jesus loves them. If you know Jesus loves you, you can endure a lot. If you know Jesus loves you, it makes you brave, but sometimes I have a hard time believing He loves me.
I sat on the futon reading this book over and over to my children. Jesus loves all the children of the world, no matter where they live. He loves the farmland children and the city children, the mountain children and the desert children. Where you live doesn’t make Jesus love you any more or less. If you live in a mansion by the sea, He loves you. But if you live in a falling down house that leaks like a sieve, he sees you there too and loves you.
I want my children to know Jesus loves them so that when the evil of this world feels like a steamroller about to flatten them, they will have courage. I sang all the verses in this book to my children and I made up verses for them because I want each of them to know Jesus loves them.
Jesus loves the little E This little E in the world. Zooming all around the house, much less quiet than a mouse. Jesus loves the little E in the world.
Jesus loves the little N This little N in the world. She loves going in the swing and Dad’s tickling. Jesus loves the little N in the world.
Jesus loves the little T This little T in the world. Spending all the day outside, pushing the mower and climbing the slide. Jesus loves the little T in the world.
Jesus loves the little A This little A in the world. She loves to wear her pocket pants, but she does not like the ants. Jesus loves the little A in the world.
I enjoyed singing to my children that Jesus loves them. I believed it for them. For me though? My life is full of quirks and screw ups. I know in my head all those Bible verses that tell me Jesus loves me. I read them again and again and they comfort me, but some days my heart still forgets that Jesus loves me. All I can see is that big, heavy steam roller headed straight for me and my courage fails.
So I wrote a verse for me too.
Jesus loves the grown up Elisabeth. This grown up Elisabeth in the world. She wears her homemade woolen socks while she hikes over the rocks. Jesus loves the grown up Elisabeth in the world.
It doesn’t matter how old I am, or where I live, or the shape of my body, or if my children behave perfectly. Jesus still loves me and that makes all the difference.
You’re Not Too Much for Jesus, by Michelle Watson, PhD, LPC
God’s Fairness – Some Recovery Quickly and Some Don’t, video resource
Turning Your Down into Up: A Realistic Plan for Healing from Depression, book by Gregg Jantz, PhD