Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – May 1, 2019
We love because he first loved us. 1 John 4:19
Not everyone is easy to love! Many EGA’s (extra grace required) live defeated by their shame. Consumed with their hurt they easily hurt others and initially are closed to comfort and care. They nurse their pain in an unproductive process, refusing to receive counsel they remain stuck in self-pity. We have all been there, mad at ourselves for undiagnosed reasons, a scowled face accompanied by a droopy posture, unable to deliver ourselves and unwilling to ask for help. Only patient, kind and gentle love administered in persistent doses can penetrate an unlovable’s heart. Love never fails!
Love for God is obedience; love for God is holiness. To love God and to love man is to be conformed to the image of Christ, and this is salvation.
God’s love is far superior to man’s love. The Lord’s love is perfect–man’s is imperfect. Christ’s love is unconditional–man’s love is conditional. The love of God is limitless–the love of man is limited. Divine love is diverse–human love is likeminded. Think of an earthly father whose love is admirable, but still our heavenly Father’s love far exceeds his worthy example. Our Lord lavishes His love on our life so we can lavishly love other lives.
Point to Ponder: Our Lord lavishes His love on our life so we can lavishly love other lives.
We are loved by the Lord to love for the Lord. Indeed, we are called by Christ to love with a love not of this world. It is a love that can only be explained by an encounter with Almighty God. His transforming power upon a humble heart positions His disciple to love on His behalf. The parting words of our Savior defined a radical love language introducing the new nomenclature of how His disciples were to love. His command and promise faithfully lived is the best apologetic for faith.
“And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them” (1 John 4:16).
Our sequence of service and love starts with our brothers and sisters in the faith. If we ignore or ‘shoot our wounded,’ we are unattractive to an unloved world. Those who already live a lowly standard have little interest in exchanging it for another lowly standard. However, when we esteem the Lord’s unconditional love for one another, we are attractive to the unsaved. Thus, a fellow believer caught in sin needs our loving restoration, not our harsh condemnation.
The beginning of love is to let those we love be perfectly themselves, and not to twist them to fit our own image. Otherwise we love only the reflection of ourselves we find in them.
Our love for the Lord is evident when we do what we know to be true. Obedience to our loving heavenly Father draws other potential disciples into our Father’s forgiving arms of grace. I show my love for another child of God when I honor God. Like siblings whose love for each other grows as they honor their parents, so Christians who honor their heavenly Father grow in their love for one another. Yes, as we are loved–we become Christ’s channel to love like Him!
“Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us” (1 John 4:11-12).
Heavenly Father, grow my abiding love in Christ so I am able to love like Christ.
Who needs my unconditional love that is hard to love?
Joshua 22:5; Psalm 119:47-48, 127; John 14:15, 21; 1 John 2:5
Our love for the Lord is evident, when we do what we know to be true. #wisdomhunters #lovedtolove
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