We love each other because he loved us first.
1 John 4:19
We are even capable of loving others because of His gift on the cross. We have the ability to truly love beyond the Hallmark Cards and boxes of Russell Stover's Chocolate (which are awesome), but there is a love that goes wayyyy beyond that my friends. I want to challenge you to dig a bit deeper into your ability to love, this month is a great time to dedicate to really loving!!!
Simply love. It's going to be my focus this month. Taking my theme of Simple, I'm applying it to loving others, simply. Take a look at 1 Corinthians 13 to get a better look at what it means to truly love yourself and others. Here, I'll include it here, so you don't even have to go looking, cause I love you!!!
If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
It's a pretty tall order, I can't even say that it's always easy to do....to love like that! But remember He loved us while we were still sinners, so we can't wait for people to clean up and get it right before we can love them like Jesus. Truly giving others all of ourselves is what He requires....just like He gave all of Himself to and for us. What I'm saying is, there are plenty of distractions out there that keep us focused on the great I am....nope, not that one, I'm talking about you! Me! We seem to be the true object of our affections and in order to be effective for the glory of the Lord, that has to change. Take some time this month, maybe make 1 Corinthians 13 your devotional for the month. Sit down with your husband, boyfriend, fiance or even your children, anyone really, and digest this passage and talk about creative ways to let This love shine!!
Have a blessed and loving weekend friends!! I'm off to love on some youth group kids as we head to the mountains for our winter retreat!!! A full weekend soaking in the word, playing ridiculous games, staying up late being chatty and strenghtening my bonds to these amazing people!!! God is going to rain down His love on us as we seek Him!!!! We'll see you back here next week!!! I'll be here Monday and Wednesday with more talk of biblical mentoring and Grace! Jess will tickle your ears on Tuesday and Thursday. I don't know what she's got up her sleeve for next week, but I can assure you it will be good!!!
Be blessed <3 Lorraine