Wednesday, May 25

"God is Love"... But What Does That MEAN?

"Jesus loves you," she says as she hangs up the phone.

"God is love," she says as she tries to explain how wonderful He is to someone who just doesn't get it.

Yes, God is love.  But our idea of love as we live in this often-confused, far-from-perfect world is sometimes less than accurate.  Honestly, it can be pretty skewed and totally the opposite of what love really is.  And if we don't understand what real love is and what that really means, it's hard to appreciate God's love for us.

I want to take a couple minutes to show you how I've begun to understand what "God is love" really means.

Just so that you know where I'm coming from and that I'm not pulling anything out of thin air, in 1 John 8, John proclaims "God is love."  He reiterates the same exact truth in verse 16.  If God is love, that means God defines love.  In 1 Corinthians 13, we find a longer definition of what love is.  It begins, "Love is patient.  Love is kind..."  You've heard it before.  If God is love, I was presumptuous enough to substitute (just for a minute!) the words "Love is" for "God is."  Read it like this and begin to understand how real and perfect and wonderful and everlasting God's love is for you!

God is patient,
God is kind and is not jealous,
God does not brag and is not arrogant,
does not act unbecomingly;
God does not seek His own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered,
does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;
God bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
God never fails.

Lord, Your word says that neither height, nor depth, nor anything on Heaven or Earth can separate us from the love You have towards your children.  Help us to remember that we can't earn your love but that's it's simply a free gift.  Take away our preconceived ideas of love that we've learned from imperfect people by showering us with Your love!  In Jesus name, Amen.

Tuesday, May 10

O Lord be my refuge!

I'm not a poet but every once in awhile when God inspires him, my husband is.  This poem touched my heart!  I hope you enjoy it.

O Lord be my refuge!
Dear Lord be my rest!
Give me divine guidance
On this arduous quest

Some trials come at us
They form from without
Other fires kindle thus
From within they burn out

Whether deep in our minds
Or the depths of our soul
Whether enemies armed
With a sword or with bow

We're plunged into war
In this life here on earth
The instant the Word
Was received in new birth

In scripture we're told
As the lawless abound
That love will grow cold
Take a look, all around

The headlines declare
What the prophets spoke clear
The reports that we read
Tend to weary with fear

The weight settles on us
We think in our mind
I can't stand beneath
The slow strain and the grind

Some cope with what's real
By ignoring the signs
Some eat their next meal
Oblivious to the times

Some numb themselves sick
With the drug of their choice
Some drown in vain pleasure
And drown out the small voice

Where does my help come from?
It comes from the Lord
Dear God, strengthen me
To continue forward

Shed the love of my Jesus
Abroad in my heart
Let me remember the work
You began at the start

You promised your presence
You promised your care
Your promise stands true
You'll always be there

I'll do what I can
To give it my all
To honor your name
In the midst of the fall

When my efforts fall short
As at times in the past
When I come to my senses
And remember at last

It has been by your grace
That I've been made to stand
And find hope in this place
By the strength of your hand