Dear Precious Friends,
As we embrace a new day, a gift that we find joy in, I pray love is the motivation of our lives. I am blessed to be officiating my nieces wedding this week in Greenville. As I have been gathering my thoughts for the message and asking the Holy Spirit for His wisdom, I have been in lots of scripture on what love is.
I want to share a few reminders today that have truly spoken to my heart and speak louder than ever before with all that is gong on in our world, and as Christians, how we are to be responding.
1 Cor 16:14 is a verse we all need to have at the forefront of our thoughts and actions each and every day. Let ALL that you do, be done in love. It's helpful to know who wrote this verse and to know what was going on at that time.
In one the last instructions Paul gives the church in Corinth he encourages them to “do everything in love.” After many advices regarding serious issues in the church, Paul summarized everything in one last statement. Just love one another, in everything that you do.
As we read and study the first letter to the Corinthian church it is made obvious that there are a lot of issues and struggles they are walking through, some that they seem not even aware that they are experiencing. And even though Paul gives long, thorough and instructive solutions to these problems – his heart is for them to understand that if they are to succeed in facing these issues they need to be motivated by love and love alone.
To do things through love we need to look at the creator and master of love, God. God is love and by being motivated by love as a people of God we also glorify and honor God.
In 1 Corinthians 10:23-33 Paul explains how just because “all things are lawful” doesn’t mean they all things are helpful or build others or ourselves up.
As we live life as Christians and walk through life in God’s mercy and grace through the salvation of Christ, do we have a tendency to take our freedom as Christians for granted? I think we do. Just as the Christians in Corinth are encouraged not to just seek their own good and their selfish desires in life, they are encouraged to seek the good of their neighbor. Paul even goes so far as to write: “whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Corinthians 10:31). Even as they eat and drink they should honor and love others and in that glorify God.
Loving others means putting away our selfish desires and to “simply get over ourselves. “ And if there is unwillingness in that, we need to ask ourselves the question: what are we willing do for God and for the salvation of others?
As Paul encourages the Christian Corinthians to be imitators of Christ and to be motivated by love and love alone, so are we to encourage each other of the same.
1 Corinthians 13:13 says, “So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” The greatest of all aspects of the Christian life is love. Love is to be at the foundation of all we do, all we are, and all we hold on to. If we focus on love and allow the Holy Spirit to strip everything else away, what will be left is a life of blessed simplicity rooted in face-to-face relationship with our heavenly Father.
WOW... strip everything else away... There is no I in love... It is however right in the middle of SIN....
Let's live today with love as our # 1 motive... In order for this to happen, we must we filled with the Spirit... spend time with our Lord in His word, prayer and worship...
The Holy Spirit dwelling within us is perfectly capable of guiding us away from the temptations of the enemy and toward the joy that can only be found in living for God’s kingdom. If we will choose today to be loved by God and love him in return, we will undoubtedly be filled with joy.
Joy is a consistent symptom of seeking first the kingdom of God because his kingdom is marked by joy.
Philippians 4:4 says, “Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.” I pray that your life will be marked by rejoicing today. I pray that you will so encounter the love of God that you are filled with joy in all you do. Let's Choose today to base our life on the unconditional love of our heavenly Father. Choose to love him and others in all you do in response to the incredible gift of life and His son Jesus dying on the cross for our sins... we can't help but experience His love and be filled with inexpressible joy.