Tag Archives: God’s love

…let us…

1 John 4:7-9 NKJV — Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him.

“Beloved, let us love one another…”

There is a beautiful key to this verse which begins with one word: beloved.

This letter was penned by John, one of the twelve disciples and part of the three men closest to Jesus.

He used the description of “beloved” many times in his first letter.

Because we are loved by God.

John 3:16-17 NKJV — “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

Jesus’s life, death, and Resurrection is proof of God’s love.

All of scripture is the story of God’s love.

Thus, John begins with the incredible fact that we are loved by God.

It doesn’t end there.

When we realize the extent of God’s love for us, when we accept His gift of salvation we find the old ways of darkness need to fall off of our hearts and minds.

We need to make a choice to live as He does, because we now carry His name upon our lives.

As those who bear His name, we need to live honorably before both God and mankind.

“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”

It’s clear, if we know God and His love, we too must love.

What is equally true is the lack of love points to the wicked one, whose very goal is to ruin and destroy.

John 10:10 KJV — The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

The true motives of the heart are where the testimony resides.

“He who does not love does not know God, for God is love. In this the love of God was manifested toward us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him.”

And we circle back to the beginning, beloved by God, saved through His sacrifice, because He cares for you.

Only through Jesus Christ can we live eternally with God.

Only through Jesus Christ can we understand what loving others truly is.

Only through Jesus Christ can we walk today in loving as He does.

1 John 4:11 NKJV — Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Lord, thank You for coming to Earth and teaching us what love truly is. Lord, thank You for being our example and our teacher. Lord, please help me to love others more, to live free from sin, bitterness, jealousy, covetousness, falsehood, and fear, but rather help me to fear You instead, to love You, to be devoted to You and Your Word. Lord Jesus, I humbly submit myself before You. Show me where sin is hiding, that I might turn away from it. Lord, please reveal those areas I am withholding love, that I might learn to love. Lord, please show me where I am afraid, that I might trust You instead. Thank You, Jesus for the truth of Your Word. Thank You for life eternal in Your sacrifice. Thank You for healing the sick, returning the prodigal, providing for the needy, and saving the lost. Lord, most of all, thank You for Your love! I love You, Jesus. Help me to love You more. Amen.

God’s love

But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.  For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. Therefore, be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. Now may our Lord Jesus Christ Himself, and our God and Father, who has loved us and given us everlasting consolation and good hope by grace, comfort your hearts and establish you in every good word and work. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

God’s Word speaks for itself.

In order these are the verses you just read: Ephesians 2:4, I John 4:10, John 3:16‭-‬17,Ephesians 5:1‭-‬2, II Thessalonians 2:16‭-‬17,I John 4:11 NKJV.

He loves us.

He died for us.

Let us love Him.

Let us love one another.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for Your Word. I am overwhelmed by Your love, Your goodness, Your truth. Lord Jesus, only through You can I find the ability to love correctly. Only in Your example do I see what true love is. Lord Jesus, I want that kind of love. I want to share that kind of love. Please work in me today. Please love others through me today. Thank You. Amen.

Simply love

It was last Friday.

Jase had gone out to get the mail.

He came in with news, but it wasn’t the mail which brought it.

“Mom, the neighbors are having a yard sale!”

I smiled.

We’ve gone to yard sales for years and the last two summers I’ve joined with Sis and Tim in having one.

Jase really enjoys them.

So, I told him if he could get Anne to go with him they could go to the sale.

I was busy cooking.

Anne knows how much Jase enjoys a yard sale and I think she likes them too, because it wasn’t long before they left.

What surprised me was how soon I heard the front door open.

But only one voice responded to mine, when I asked how it went.

“Mom, I thought you would like this. I know you love hydrangeas, and you had to leave all of yours when we moved, I hope you like it.”

Her worried smile startled me as much as her words surprised me.

She was holding a fairly large potted hydrangea, about a third of it was rather dead looking.

“Oh wow! Honey, thank you! What did it cost? Can I pay you back?”

“No, Mom. It was only $2 because it’s dieing. Do you think you can save it?”

“It’s worth a try!”

I wiped my hands and thanked her.

Since I didn’t have time right then, I gave it some water and went back in the house to finish cooking.

It was a while later when both returned from the yard sale.

Jase had bought a scooter.

His other one is a cherished gift, an antique from the UK.

He doesn’t ride it much, because it’s a bit small for him now and I’ve asked him to be super careful with it.

His yard sale find is bigger and definitely seen plenty of use, so it’s perfect for everyday around the block.

Anne’s other purchase was a pot.

One of the trees on our other property had beautiful yellow flowers every Spring and we all loved it.

So, I was determined to bring a tiny sapling which had grown the year before we moved.

Over this last winter I mentioned the thing looked dead, but my husband wisely advised we wait for Spring and see if it was.

To our joy it put out leaves.

It’s now in need of a new pot.

Anne had thought of this and bought me a the pot.

When I had time I looked over the hydrangea.

The part which had died was putting out new growth.

The pot was really small and it was very root bound, so I decided to place the hydrangea in the new pot.

Our tree can wait till it goes dormant for a new pot.

I have really enjoyed the new plant.

But what warms my heart is my daughter’s love and care for me.

Both the plant and the pot were her way of letting me know she noticed what I had to give up with our move and was trying to give it back in a small way.

Years ago our oldest did something similar.

She had bought me some books which I’d left behind in the UK from our move.

Both girls showed me their love in simple ways of remembering my little moments of letting go.

Simply loving me like this is such a blessing.

I am humbled by their love and attention.

I know it’s a reflection of Jesus’s love.

1 John 4:19 KJV — We love him, because he first loved us.

John 13:34 KJV — A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.

Romans 12:10 KJV — Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another;

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for my family. Thank You for our children. Thank You for Your love which has been poured out upon us. Please continue to help us be people who love in the simple things, people who look for the details, because it’s the small things which add up to the large. Please help us to be faithful in the little things. Lord Jesus, thank You for showing us such love, mercy, patience, and understanding. Please let our lives bring glory to Yours. Amen.

Good morning

With the heat, I’ve been watering as early as possible.

So far the garden is rewarding my efforts.

I’m writing from the patio this morning.

My tea beside me and a few whisps of wind ruffling my hair.

The sun hasn’t gotten beyond the apple trees and the robins are hopping about the lawn.

One in particular seems to have figured out that when I water the worms are easier to find.

It often trails behind me as I move the sprinkler.

I don’t always see it, so pretty often I scare it, causing it to fly away, because I was focused on my own thoughts.

God’s creation causes me such times of reflection and wonder.

To see His handiwork in something so temporary as flowers.

Yet, He chooses to.

Matthew 6:30 KJV — Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which to day is, and to morrow is cast into the oven, shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?

Jesus’s words come alive in the garden.

Where is my faith if I allow myself to worry over needs?

Where is my heart if I allow myself to worry over anything which isn’t a need?

Where are my thoughts if I’m feeling worried?

My life is far more precious to Him than these flowers are to me.

And I find so much joy in caring for them.

How much joy does the Lord find in caring for me?

Psalm 139:17 KJV — How precious also are thy thoughts unto me, O God! how great is the sum of them!

What joy!

To know the Lord is providing for my every detail.

To rest securely in His sovereign hand.

To walk with joy at just being loved by my Heavenly Father.

These are the things I’m learning in the garden this morning.

Praise the Lord!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for these lessons. At times I forget how to lean on You and why I don’t need to worry. I look at other things rather than focusing upon You. Please continue to patiently teach my wayward heart to have faith and trust. Please continue to speak to me through Your Word. Lord thank You for Your provision in all things. Please help me to hold life lightly, not setting my heart upon anything but You. Guard my desires and let them reflect Yours. Jesus, You are amazing. Thank You! Amen.

Because love is a verb

I sat in a chair.

Held a cup of hot tea in one hand.

And simply watched them work.

The day was beautiful.

And my family blessed me.

My hubby and our son carefully weeded the flower beds in the front yard.

But I am no longer able to do the yardwork I so enjoy.

And my husband understood how hard it has been for me to look out the window at weeds.

So, he put on his outdoor things and went to work.

Now, the front beds look so nice!

But that’s not why I feel so loved.

It’s because my family chose to spend time working on something for me that I can no longer do myself.

And that’s why love is a verb.

True love is an action which doesn’t expect or require a return.

It simply loves.

True love doesn’t try to manipulate or force anything.

It simply loves and continues to love.

After twenty-two years I can say that my husband and I have not always loved each other with that true love, but we are getting better at it.

And the reason is Jesus.

It’s through Christ’s true love that we learn how to love each other.

It’s through Him we are learning to love our children with that same true love.

Yes, we have an emotional bond with each other and our children.

But love is a choice.

It brings even deeper emotional bonds and it grows wonderful things like trust, joy, and comfort.

But true love is a choice.

During this season, true love is the answer.

Jesus is that true love.

And I praise God for it!

Zephaniah 3:17 NKJV — The LORD your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”

Never too late…

I had a dream.

I wanted to share it with you.

There was a run down house.

It belonged to a farmer.

An old man known for his gruff words and harsh temper.

He worked hard every day on his farm, but he never did more than patch his old house.

A group of boys, led by a rapscallion of a teenager were full of mischief one day.

They had decided to play a prank on the old man.

Years ago, before they were even born a terrible storm had come and the man, young at the time, had boarded over all the windows to protect his home.

For some odd reason, every board still remained in place.

Those boys decided to jerk down the boards from the large window which faced the road.

Then they hid to see how the old man would respond.

When the old man shuffled into the house he didn’t look out the window like they expected.

Instead his eyes were fixed upon something laying on the table where the sunlight shone brightly.

He slowly went over and to the boys’ surprise, he sat down, sobbing, and lay his head on the table.

He just sat there with his head on the table, never looking out the window, weeping.

The boys were shocked and embarrassed.

They began to drift toward the road, but still in sight of the old man through that big picture window.

Suddenly another came past the house.

He saw the boys, but what surprised him most was the window and what he saw through it.

His voice was lost after the first ejaculation of surprise.

Tentatively the youngest boy asked, “Mr. Maccullin, why did old Jasper leave his windows boarded up?”

The man rubbed his chin and patted the boy gently on the shoulder.

“Well, he was married back then, to a pretty little woman who adored him. She took sick during that storm and died so sudden like, he never really recovered.”

Mr. Maccullin and the boys all went away, carrying the sad picture of the old man with them.

The next day was Sunday.

The boys and Mr. Maccullin along with all the folks had a great shock that morning.

In walked the old man.

He was cleaner and wore a smile.

Underneath his arm was a well used Bible.

He walked straight to the pastor and asked if he might share a quick word.

The pastor nodded solemnly.

With a shaky voice the old man spoke.

“I don’t know who dun it. But God used someone’s fool prank to get me back. You see ever since I lost my dear wife, I’ve been mad at God. But He never did give up on me. Yesterday, when I walked in the house, there was a huge ray of sunlight shining upon my dear Elsie’s Bible. It still lay open, same as the last time she was reading it. I know, my dear Elsie is with Jesus and I want to be there too.”

He wiped his eyes with the back of his hand and sat down.

The Reverend stepped forward and spoke, “On this Earth, it’s never too late to come to Jesus.”

…………………………………………………………….

It’s true.

No matter what tragedy or selfishness has kept someone refusing the love of Jesus Christ, it’s never too late, on this Earth, to surrender.

And for those of us who already know the blessed love of Jesus as a daily miracle, it’s a reminder.

Don’t ever stop loving others, especially those who are difficult.

Instead pray that the ray of God’s Son will shine into their heart and soul and save them.

Hearts revealed

image

I love this!

Our friends support their family through their business and this is one of their amazing creations.

I love how their hearts are so dedicated to serving the Lord and their family.

How do I know this?

It’s revealed daily by their choices.

It’s revealed over time by their commitment to following through.

It’s especially revealed when watching them walk through trials.

Trials.

We’ve walked through a number of those and are still waiting on the Lord for some.

My husband was preparing a sermon and felt God wanted him to teach on trials and temptation.

“What’s the difference between a test/trial and temptation?” he asked.

I chewed on that.

The verses in James came to mind: “Blessed is the man who endures temptation;  for when he has been approved, he will receive the  crown of life which the Lord has promised to those who love Him. Let no one say when he is tempted, ‘I am tempted by God,’; for God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does He Himself tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed.” James 1:12-14 NKJV

Temptation reveals the person’s heart.

When I’m struggling with temptation it means my own desires are trying to rule me, instead of me ruling my desires.

But what about tests/trials?

Abraham’s heart was revealed when he was tested in the land of Moriah. (Gen. 22: 1-19)

Job’s heart was revealed by all the tragedy he went through. (Book of Job)

There’s more to those stories.

As I reviewed the test Abraham and Isaac went through I remembered it was a foreshadowing of what God and Jesus would do.

Then I thought about the cross.

For thousands of years the Jews had been looking for the Messiah.

When Jesus was crucified and buried I’m certain it looked like the end of everything for the disciples.

Yet, Jesus rose again and through that death and resurrection all of mankind was purchased.

No one in history to that date had an understanding of Who God is or Who Jesus is.

The worst, most undeserved punishment, what looked like utter ruin to those who loved Jesus, was actually the Greatest Moment in History.

Not only did Jesus rise and give us hope for eternal life, He smashed the picture of an angry God waiting to smite all of mankind.

Mankind feared punishment from God. He couldn’t understand that Jesus came to take what each of us deserves upon Himself.

God’s heart towards us was revealed.

–wow–

“Lord,
I am ashamed of the many times I have looked at the test/trial and whined, ‘WHY?!’ . Please forgive me for misunderstanding You. Thank You for teaching me that all these things in life are not the point. You want me to know You, to see Who You are and You are working through these things to reveal Yourself to me. Please continue to teach me how to let go of the temporary and how to cling to the eternal. Again, thank You for all You have done and are doing. Thank You for revealing Yourself to us.”