Still Waters Statement of Faith
I. We Believe God's Words Are Life Giving and Healing
1. We believe the Bible to be inspired by the Holy Spirit, the only infallible, authoritative Word of God in all matters. Everything else we believe is based on this Truth (Proverbs 4, Deuteronomy 4:2; Psalm 19:7-9; Proverbs 30:5, 6; 1 Corinthians 2:13; Galatians 1:8-9; 2 Timothy 3:15-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21; Revelation 22:18-190).
2. We believe that aligning our thoughts and actions with God's Truths brings us to a place of living our best life (Psalm 1:1-3, 2Corinthians 10:4-5, Psalm 119:1-176).
3. We believe God loves you (Genesis 1:1-Revelation 22:21), and our beliefs about His love for you are expressed below in the five remaining parts of our statement of faith.
II. We Believe God Loves You Just As You Are
4. "But God showed His great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners." (Romans 5:8) No matter how much you have messed up or how far you feel from God, He still loves you and wants a relationship with you. Even when we walk through seasons of rebelling against God, and perhaps even say, “I hate you,” He replies, “I love you”. You do not need to change or reach a better place before you come to God. He will help you change and get to a better place.
5. "But God is so rich in mercy, and He loved us so much, that even though we were dead because of our sins, He gave us life when He raised Christ from the dead. (It is only by God’s grace that you have been saved!)" (Ephesians 2:4-5) God’s love is a precious gift that you don’t have to do anything to earn or deserve, it is yours for the taking. This is grace: God loves you so much that He paid the price to offer you the gift of eternal life and of relationship with Him.
III. We Believe God Loves You and That His Love Is Personal
6. "See how very much our Father loves us, for He calls us His children, and that is what we are..." (1 John 3:1). When you begin a relationship with God, you don’t just become God’s friend, you become His child. You are a child of God. You may have heard this phrase many times before, but take some time to let it sink in. God, your Father, calls you His child. God delights in you and wants the best for you.
7. "God decided in advance to adopt us into His own family by bringing us to Himself through Jesus Christ. This is what He wanted to do, and it gave Him great pleasure." (Ephesians 1:5). You cannot adopt a child by accident, and it is no accident that God has adopted you. He chooses to love, cherish and care for you forever. God is a perfect parent, if your earthly parents have failed you, know that God never will.
8. "For this is how God loved the world: He gave His one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life." (John 3:16). If you talk to any loving parents, they probably cannot imagine any reason they would willingly let their child die. They would much rather die than let their child die, because their child’s life is so much more important to them than their own lives. But God loves you so much that He was willing to let His Son come to earth, be mistreated, and ultimately die for your sins so that you could become His child too. That is love that’s beyond understanding.
IV. We Believe God Loves You and That His Love Helps You Change and Grow
9. "Since we believe that Christ died for all, we also believe that we have all died to our old life. He died for everyone so that those who receive His new life will no longer live for themselves. Instead, they will live for Christ, who died and was raised for them." (2 Corinthians 5:14-15). God loves you just as you are, but He also loves you too much to let you stay how you are. He wants to see you grow and change for the better, to experience lasting change. Once you choose to begin a relationship with God, you receive His Holy Spirit, who guides you, gives you strength and is present with you every day.
10. "And this hope will not lead to disappointment. For we know how dearly God loves us, because He has given us the Holy Spirit to fill our hearts with His love." (Romans 5:5) Not only does God love you and want a relationship with you, He wants to be present in every moment of your life. When you begin a relationship with God, the Holy Spirit comes into your life. He is with you through the good and the bad. You can choose to ignore the Holy Spirit’s influence, but He will never leave you. He is always waiting for you to turn back and seek His comfort, wisdom and guidance. The Holy Spirit can help you experience and have a deeper understanding of God’s love for you.
11. "My child, don’t reject the LORD’s discipline, and don’t be upset when He corrects you. For the LORD corrects those He loves, just as a father corrects a child in whom He delights." (Proverbs 3:11-12). Though people often associate discipline with punishment, this verse shows us that God’s discipline is more about training and teaching. That is why Jesus’ followers were called disciples, or people who follow a teacher. When you follow Jesus, you become His disciple. In the process of learning from Jesus, some lessons will be hard or even feel like punishment. But God is not out to punish you or hurt you. He is trying to teach you. Your choices have consequences, and God usually allows you to experience those consequences. Facing hard things and overcoming them is one of the best ways to learn. Don’t let yourself get dragged down by hardships or isolate yourself from God and others. Instead, turn to God for help and discover what He is teaching you in the process.
V. We Believe God Loves You and Wants You To Cling To His Love In All Things
12. "I will be glad and rejoice in Your unfailing love, for You have seen my troubles, and You care about the anguish of my soul." (Psalm 31:7) When things are hard, it can be easy to feel alone or like no one cares. But God cares. He cares about your sadness and hardships. He cares about your suffering. Why? Because God loves you. Even when things seem hopeless, you can still hope in God. God does not promise He will fix our problems in the immediate sense. We will experience pain and suffering and sorrow. But He does promise that one day, everyone who has a relationship with Him will spend eternity in His presence, where suffering and sorrow will be gone forever. But God is not just telling us, “It will get better later,” and leaving it at that. God hurts when you hurt because He loves you. He is always there to comfort you with His unfailing love as you bring your struggles to Him.
13. "I will never forget this awful time, as I grieve over my loss. Yet I still dare to hope when I remember this: The faithful love of the LORD never ends! His mercies never cease. Great is His faithfulness; His mercies begin afresh each morning." (Lamentations 3:20-23) Even when things seem hopeless, you can hope in God because He loves You. Even if you are in the midst of a difficult time or are grieving a great loss, there is still reason for hope. Everything around you may feel like it’s falling apart. Everything inside of you may feel like it’s falling apart. But God’s love and mercy will never fail you. Ask God to give you hope because of His never-ending love. Ask Him to fill you with His peace that is more powerful than all of the hard things in your life. Every day is a new opportunity to receive God’s mercy and love.
14. "Though He brings grief, He also shows compassion because of the greatness of His unfailing love. For He does not enjoy hurting people or causing them sorrow." (Lamentations 3:32-33) God is loving. He does not want to harm you but to show you compassion. When you experience difficult things or see suffering in the world, you may be tempted to think God dislikes you or that He enjoys seeing some people suffer. This is not true. God created a beautiful, perfect world, but people brought imperfection into it. God is hurt when He sees how much people suffer. He has allowed people to make a mess of the world for a period of time, but He will not leave it that way forever. God will make things right again because He is compassionate and loving.
VI. We Believe God Loves You and His Love For You Is Beyond Comprehension
15. "Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance." (1 Corinthians 13:4-7) Everyone needs this type of love, and you are loved this way by the God of all creation. It is a free gift. Only God can love you perfectly, humans just can't. If you expect perfect love from another person, you will be let down, and if you expect to be able to love others perfectly, you will fail. When you have a relationship with God and experience His love, it empowers you to to love others more closely to the way God loves.
16. "Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced His perfect love." (1 John 4:18) When you understand that God loves you no matter what, you no longer need to be afraid of your failings causing Him to love you less. If you could only truly know the depth of God’s love, you would have nothing to fear. God already knows about the wrong things you’ve done as well as any you will do. He still chooses to love you.
17. "Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow — not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below — indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:35, 37-39). You are secure in your relationship with God: Nothing can separate you from God’s love. Does it mean He no longer loves us if we have troubles or failings, or make mistakes (large or small)? No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loves us. God is more powerful than anything in heaven or on earth. When you accept Jesus’ invitation to begin a relationship with God, you are secure in His love forever. There is nothing powerful enough to separate you from God’s love. Even when things are difficult or you feel far from God, it’s not because God stops loving you. The truth is that God will never stop loving you, no matter what you do.
18. "And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God." (Ephesians 3:18-19). God’s love is so great that we, as mere humans, cannot fully understand it. Humans’ love for one another often depends, at least partly, on the behavior of the person being loved. God’s love for us does not. Do you long to be known and loved for who you are? God is the only one who can wholly do that.
19. "But let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them sing joyful praises forever. Spread Your protection over them, that all who love Your name may be filled with joy. For You bless the Godly, O LORD; You surround them with Your shield of love." (Psalm 5:11-12). God’s love is so much more than the warm fuzzy feeling we often associate with the word love. His love is a powerful force, protecting and comforting us. Being in God’s love is a position of not just joy but also safety.
When you run to God for protection, He surrounds you with His shield of love. Think about that image for a while. Experience the security you have because God’s love surrounds you. Let His love flood your mind with a sense of peace and comfort.
20. "Your unfailing love, O LORD, is as vast as the heavens; your faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds. Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, Your justice like the ocean depths. You care for people and animals alike, O LORD. How precious is Your unfailing love, O God! All humanity finds shelter in the shadow of Your wings." (Psalm 36:5-7). You have probably been hurt or betrayed by someone you love at some point in your life. Maybe you have experienced this more than once. Once one person hurts you, it often becomes harder to open up to and trust others. In contrast, God’s love is truly unconditional. He never fails you or betrays you. You do not need to hold back in your relationship with God, because He is totally trustworthy. When you feel let down by people, remember this: Though people may let you down, God never will.
(From, "20 Inspirational Bible Verses About Gods Love For You", by Faith Eng. Retrieved 7/2022. Modified with permission.)