What’s Love Got to do With It

What’s love got to do with it!

Unlike the Tina Turner song,
love is more than an “old fashioned notion”.
We were created to love by God, Who is love.
7 Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, 
for love comes from God.
Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God.
8 But anyone who does not love does not know God, 
for God is love.  9 God showed how much he loved 
us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that
 we might have eternal life through him.
10 This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us
and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.

So much of the time we put conditions on love.
We base love on a feeling or emotion.
God’s love is unconditional.
It doesn’t matter what we do or say, He will always love us.

The Bible has three words for love;
agape, phileo, and eros.
Eros is the type of love between husband and wife.
Phileo is the most common and generally means to love, to like,
treat affectionately and be friendly.
Phileo is the kind of love we share with family and friends.
Agape love is the highest form of love and often the hardest to attain.
It is a selfless love.
C. S. Lewis explained agape as “a selfless love, 
a love that was passionately
committed to the well being of the other”.
This is the love God has for us.
It is this love which enabled Jesus to leave heaven
and sacrifice Himself for us.
It is this love that still saves and heals us.
God is committed to loving us unconditionally even 
when we turn our backs on Him.
Let God love you today.

1Corinthians 13:7
Love bears all things. believes all things,
hopes all things, endures all things.

It Starts At Home

Jesus gave two commandments for His disciples to follow.
The first, “love God with all your heart”, Matthew 22:37
and the second, “love your neighbor as yourself”, Matthew 22:39
The former verse wraps up and includes everything within
the Ten Commandments given to Moses.
By loving God, we are obedient to His word 
and are glorifying Him.
It is the greatest commandment.
The latter verse is wrapped up in the first.
Who would not want good things for themselves.
In the same way, we should want good things for our neighbors.
In a global sense, our neighbor is everyone.
We all live next door to someone 
and that person lives next to another, then another, and so on.
Our neighbors cross boundary lines, country lines,
and nationalities.
Love comes down from God
and starts at home.
It then travels exponentially outward in ever increasing 
numbers as others love one another.
Nothing is greater than love
and it starts with you! 


Break The Hard Shell

Breaking our hard exterior may not be such a bad thing.
As children, we are bendable, pliable, and
can easily adapt to people, things, and situations.
We look with fresh eyes upon the world.
But then, we grow up,
and as we grow, we tend to lose our bendability.
We are shaped by our circumstances.
We can become stubborn, inflexible, obdurate (pig-headed),
and set in our ways.
But Jesus tells us 
“unless you change and become like 
little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”
So how do we become like little children?
We break down the hard shell that surrounds us.
Once we do , we can be put back together in a different way.
A different form….the image of Christ.
We become a new creation,
and old things have passed away,
all things become new.
God is the Master Potter.
Isaiah 64:
But now, O Lord
You are our Father;
We are the clay, and You our potter;
and all we are the work of Your hand.
Let God be your Master Potter!
He can only transform your hard shell.  

Experiential Knowledge

God knows about being human.
He knows what trials we go through.
He knows our full range of emotions.
Not because He created us, but because He became one of us.
God took on human flesh in the Man Jesus.
Jesus laid His divinity aside to become us. 
He had humble beginnings.
Born in a cave.
Fled Jerusalem to save His life from Herod.
Jesus had  a physical body, a mind with emotions.
A family with brothers and sisters.
He learned and took lessons.
He worked.
His friends and family denied Him.
But Jesus said to them, 
“A prophet is not without honor except in his own country,
among his own relatives, and in his own house.
He had adversity.
Hardship, sadness, hurt, distress, pain.
He had happiness, love, blessing, friends.
Jesus has experiential knowledge 
and knows the aches and pains our bodies have.
He knows what it feels like to be overwhelmed and tired.
He knows the depth of our souls.
Upon Ascension, the Holy Spirit was sent to live inside us.
Jesus connects with us not only because He lived like us
but through the connection with the Holy Spirit and our spirit.
It is a direct line to God the Father.
The Holy Spirit being one with Jesus knows the same 
things He knows. 
In this way we can have confidence God hears us,
sees us, knows us, understands and speaks to us.
For we do not have a High Priest Who is unable
to understand and sympathize and have a shared feeling
with our weaknesses and infirmities
and liability to the assaults of temptation,
but One Who has been tempted in every respect as we are,
yet without sinning.


A Better Assurance


God gives His children a better assurance of salvation, mercy and grace through His word.
This assurance leads to a life full of richness and fulfillment.  
We will still face troubles but Jesus tells us “to be of good cheer, I have overcome the world”.  
Jesus came to walk among us to show Who God is, giving 
assurance to those who follow Him. John 14:8
As He walked about, Jesus showed this assurance with love and compassion.
He taught the way to salvation and eternity was through Him.
And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues,
preaching the gospel of the kingdom,
and healing all kinds of sickness
and all kinds of disease among the people.
And through this assurance, we can have confidence in God’s word.
We have assurance of salvation.
Assurance of God’s saving work.
Assurance of eternal protection.
Assurance of victory.
Assurance of peace.
Assurance of understanding.
Assurance of resurrection.
The Lord your God is with you,
He is mighty to save.


Destination: Heaven

We are travelers 
Passing through this life
A journey of faith
Leaving a legacy of hope
Giving glory to the Lord
We are travelers 
Moving from here to there
One foot in and one foot there
Reaching a hand up
Reaching a hand out
We are travelers
Seeking to share the road
The road to heaven
it is not always easy
But the reward is eternity
We are travelers
Setting our mind on Him
Keeping our eyes on the end of the road
Staying focused on the journey
For our citizenship is in heaven
We are travelers


Destination: Heaven


Can You Hear Him?

Can you hear God?
Is it loud?
Is it audible?
Is it a knowing inside?
He is always speaking to us. 
But how?
Most Christians will tell you “I heard God speak to me”.
It can be a little confusing.
Do they actually hear His voice or is it something else?
Jesus tells us in John 10:27,
“My sheep hear My voice and I know them and they follow Me.” 

We can hear God through His word,
John 8:47
He who is of God hears God’s words;
the inner witness with the Holy Spirit,
Romans 8:16
The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit…

through other Christians  with a word of discernment,
God may choose to speak out loud just as He did when Jesus was baptized
or to Abraham and Moses.

One of the best ways to hear God’s voice is to have a deep relationship 
with Him, know His word and be obedient in what He tells us.

The more time we spend with God, the more we read and
meditate on the His word, 
 the clearer we hear Him.