In order to fully utilize and walk boldly into the new year, seeking elevation and conquering new territories we cannot pour new wine into old sheep skin. Our inner nature must be continually transformed by a daily encounter with the Holy Spirit. The fruit of the Spirit are essentially the tell-tale signs in the life of a believer, as the proof that indeed we are allowing the Holy Spirit to fully have its way in us. We do not engage in behavior modifications and try to change ourselves to exhibit these traits rather it is the inner workings of the Holy Spirit in us as He walks with us on this journey (no matter how it may look) to transform us into having the nature of Christ.
What is Love?
There are multiple definitions if love and so many different layers to it. A few years back there was an ensemble post for Valentine’s Day that asked on the meaning of Love. At that time my response in the blog post was that love is a commitment that requires dedication. Love is a choice and not based on feelings and emotions. Love is setting aside our preferences and desires at times and to put aside self-seeking ways in order to seek the best for someone else. The ultimate display of love will always be God’s love towards mankind.
For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life. John 3:16
Imagine giving away your own begotten Son who is so pure and so perfect for a group of people who’s commitment and dedication to you isn’t even guaranteed?Tweet
God gives us the free will and the choice to select how we would like to live our lives even after performing the ultimate sacrifice for the salvation of our souls. Can you imagine making such a huge sacrifice and for someone not to return that favor in the same manner or with same fervor to match that energy? #DeepIt
To love is to be devoted to someone or something. When we are devoted to something we go to the ends of the Earth
"There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends." John 15:13
This is one of the central and pinnacle acts of Christianity. That Jesus loved us so much that He was willing to give up His life for us. We cannot claim to love anyone if we ourselves do not yet understand the depth of the love Christ had toward us. We will always display conditional love. That is we will only love others when it is conducive to us and it satisfies us. We only love our family, friends and colleagues when it suits us best and whenever they step out of line or do something that displeases us we are quick to shut them out.
So, how then do we love?
In order to practically and genuinely love others we require the help and wisdom of the Holy Spirit. True love is self-sacrificing and this has been modeled perfectly by Jesus Christ. This verse lists beautifully the practical attributes of love
"Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 5 or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6 It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7 Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance." 1 Corinthians 13: 4 - 7
Why do we love?
We love first because God first loves us. There are different types of love Eros, Familial, Philia and Agape.
Eros – romantic love between lovers.
Familial – love felt toward our family members and loved ones, for example a mother’s love for her child.
Philia – brotherly love that we feel for fellow brothers and sisters in the faith and humanity including those in our community and vicinity.
Agape – the unconditional and immeasurable love of God towards ALL mankind. This is the type of love we must all strive to achieve and actualize in our daily lives as Christians.
That’s the peak of our love engine. In life we experience and engage in the different types of love but ultimately we are to get to a stage where our standard and factory setting is agape love.
Love can so easily roll off the tongue yet so difficult to truly live out in real life. To love someone is to deny yourself just so you can fulfill the desires of that person.Musings with Mo
We love God so we deny our flesh and live to fulfill His purpose and please Him with our lives. We love our spouses and our loved ones by doing our best to satisfy them and ensure their needs are met.
Power of Love
This is why countries would wage war against each other just because one king wants to avenge and pacify his queen or a king because of love can relinquish his power and authority of his kingdom (I am looking at you King Ahab of 1 Kings 19).
Beyond that our source of power and strength is found in the love of God for us. (Power of Your Love by Darlene Zschech is such a powerful song that highlights this power).
Love is powerful.
Love is God.
God is LOVE.
"May we experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then we will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God." Ephesians 3: 19
May we always be found delighting ourselves in our savior, fully receiving and growing in understanding of His love and pouring that love on those around us. So help us Lord, Amen.Tweet