June is Black Music Month! To celebrate, each of our EmpowerMoments will be based on Black music for the entire month. This includes Black songwriters, producers or performers. Stay tuned as we use various genres of Black music to tell our stories and exemplify the beauty of God’s love! Happy Black Music Month! Dance as if no one is watching!
“Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of your evil behavior. But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation.” (Colossians 1:21-22 NIV)
As I’ve ministered to women about their personal stories and shared my own, I am even more convinced that God loves us. Testimonies such as these:
“I was beaten and abused. I was raped and molested and grew up thinking that I was worthless. I was ripped of any purity that my friends spoke of and my self-worth was nonexistent. I wondered could God love someone like me.” Yes He can. “I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten, the hopper, the destroyer, and the cutter, my great army, which I sent among you. You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. And my people shall never again be put to shame.” (Joel 2:25-26 ESV)
“I grew up a promiscuous teen and I didn’t see a problem with it. I have had about four abortions and have slept with clergymen, husbands, and just random people. Can God love someone like me?” Yes He can. “If we [freely] admit that we have sinned and confess our sins, He is faithful and just (true to His own nature and promises) and will forgive our sins [dismiss our lawlessness] and [continuously] cleanse us from all unrighteousness [everything not in conformity to His will in purpose, thought, and action].” (I John 1:9 AMP)
“I grew up in foster care, shifting from home to home. My parents abandoned me and didn’t care to take care of me. I grew up feeling like failure was my destiny. Can God love someone like me?” Yes He can, and David is a witness. “Although my father and my mother have forsaken me, yet the Lord will take me up [adopt me as His child].” (Psalms 27:10 AMP)
“I’m self-righteous. I haven’t recognized that my life has been spared due to grace and that my reputation has been salvaged because of God. I figured it is all of my doing. Can God love someone like me?” Yes He can, but we have to humble ourselves. “Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” (James 4:10 NIV)
“I preach God’s word in worship service, yet I fornicate throughout the week. I don’t practice what I preach. I steal from God’s church by holding my tithes and I cause offense to his vulnerable followers with insensitive counsel. Can God really love someone like me?” Yes He can. Confess with your mouth and you shall be forgiven. “Whoever conceals their sins does not prosper, but the one who confesses and renounces them finds mercy.” (Proverbs 28:13 NIV)
“I slept with my best friend’s husband, and she doesn’t know. I’m scared to confess and the secret is eating me alive. I knew what I was doing, but failed to stand for my morals. Can God love someone like me?” He can, and not only does He love you but He can forgive you too. “…Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little.” And he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” (Luke 7:47-48 NIV)
Can you relate to any of these testimonies? If they do not fit you perfectly, I’m sure we all can relate to at least parts of these. I know I can. What’s interesting about God is that through repentance and submission, God forgives and washes away all sins. God reminds us of this in Isaiah when He says, “Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (Isaiah 1:18 NIV)
Until you can believe that God loves YOU, you will not have power in your life. God loves you beyond your sins and has sustained you through the harsh actions of others. Through Paul, His Word reminds us, “neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 8: 38-39 NIV) This means your past, present, and future cannot separate you from the love of God. Not even the demonic forces (whom many of us call haters) can separate you from the love of God.
Thank You for loving me. Thank You for giving me the opportunity to accept the salvation from Your Son Jesus Christ so that now I can say, “You love even a sinner like me.” Lord help me to realize the greatness of Your love so that I may walk in power, knowing and not wavering that You love me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!
Ladies, I EMPOWER you to shout from the roof tops, whether figuratively from your spirit or literally from your mouth (there’s even more power in your tongue), tweet it or update your Facebook page that God loves you. Say it with boldness, “God loves even me!”
Allow the ministry of Beyond Words to usher you into worship with this Love Medley by God’s Chosen.
As a professional, Mrs. Khalilah Burton is a College Biology Instructor. She is also currently pursuing a Doctorate of Education in Higher Ed and Community College Leadership. Khalilah is passionate about her faith journey and uses this key scripture as her inspiration: “But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” (Isaiah 40:31 KJV) She and her husband serve as Co-Service leaders and Co-Group leaders of SustainedLove, which supports marriage get-a-ways from Family Life. Khalilah also serves as a guest speaker and panelist for various events for women and Christian empowerment. Khalilah resides in Millbrook, Alabama with her wonderful husband Donald Burton, Jr. and their energetic four-year old daughter. They attend Vaughn Forest Church. Check out Khalilah’s Christian weight loss blog here.