A Life of Grace

Grace does not excuse you from your sin or give you the freedom to do what you want. Grace is what the Lord gives to the humble that allows that person to do what is right. In the Bible grace was a blessing that came before or after the commands of what the Lord wants His people to do or be.

James 4:4-6 You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you think that the Scripture speaks to no purpose: “He jealously desires the Spirit which He has made to dwell in us”? But He gives a greater grace. Therefore it says, “God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.”

Grace is not something that we give ourselves when we mess up and sin. God gives grace to the humble and His grace is what enables us to not be crushed by our guilt but to be able to get back up and do what He has called us to do. God gives grace to the humble. Humility is confessing your sin to the Lord and your need for Him. Grace allows us to be faithful to the Lord so that we will not be called an adulteress by our flirting with and friendship with the world. He gives a greater grace than what the world has to offer. Grace is what sets you free from your bondage to sin.

Ezra 9:8 But now for a brief moment grace has been shown from the Lord our God, to leave us an escaped remnant and to give us a peg in His holy place, that our God may enlighten our eyes and grant us a little reviving in our bondage.

You were in bondage to sin before you became a Christian. He saved you from your sin and sins and the consequences of them. Your sin is your desire to be your own god and the sins are all of the snares that you became caught in by trying to be your own god.

Ephesians 2:8,9 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Again, our redemption is through His blood and forgiveness of our sins, according to the riches of His grace towards us. God is gracious towards us because of what Christ did on the cross. He took our sin.

Ephesians 1:7,8a In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace which He lavished on us.

Grace increases when we sin. This means that there is nothing that is beyond His grace to allow you to come back to Him. His grace is what allows us to come back when we have fallen so that we can be restored in our fellowship with Him.

Romans 5:20,21 The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Grace reigns through righteousness to eternal life. Eternal life is knowing the Lord. If you are growing in grace then you will be growing in the knowledge of Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.

John 17:3 This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.

Grace is with those who love the Lord Jesus Christ with a pure love. A love that obeys Him and keeps His commandments.

Ephesians 6:24 Grace be with all those who love our Lord Jesus Christ with incorruptible love.

Are you growing in grace and in the knowledge of our Lord? Is your love for Him incorruptible and pure? Or are you still struggling with friendship with the world? He loves you and jealousy desires the Spirit that He has made to dwell in you. Ask the Lord to help you be faithful to Him. Put yourself around Christians who love Him rather than the world. The Lord will help you and give you more grace to be faithful to Him if you will humble yourself before Him.

 

A Life with Love Guards the Heart

Since love flows out of our hearts and is expressed through our actions towards another then the one who loves understands the great importance of guarding the heart. Same thing as “garbage in garbage out” except it is “love in love out”. What comes in is what will go out.

Watch over your heart with all diligence,
For from it flow the springs of life. Proverbs 4:23

Since God is the source of love and His love is pure then our greatest need in life is to know Him and to experience His love moment by moment. If we will do this then out of our heart and life will flow the love of God.

Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God. Matthew 5:8

However, our hearts are deceitful and we will even deceive ourselves. When one is deceived they do not realize that they are deceived. That is the meaning of deception. Satan is a liar and seeks to deceive us through our hearts by making temptations seem so appealing just as he did with Eve.

The heart is more deceitful than all else
And is desperately sick;
Who can understand it? Jeremiah 17:9

However, it is not until we have given into the temptation and fallen into the devil’s snares of death that we realize we have been trapped. Once we are trapped in the snares of death then we go into a downward spiral.

But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren. James 1:14-16

A Christian has been made spiritually alive but his soul can still experience death through sinning. The death that he experiences is not any different from the death that the nonChristian experiences. The nonChristian lives in a perpetual state of death but the Christian can still experience death to the soul and that is through the guilt, regret, depression, etc.

For he who does wrong will receive the consequences of the wrong which he has done, and that without partiality. Colossians 3:25

It is not until we come to the Lord will we be cleansed of our sins. The nonChristian needs a total cleansing. When we come to Him for salvation then He cleanses our conscience through His Holy Spirit and His Word and purifies our hearts so that we can see Him again and experience His great love.

Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you—not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience—through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, I Peter 3:21

The Christian needs their conscience to be cleansed through confessing their sins for when they sin while they are the world.

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. I John 1:9

IF we do not guard our hearts and keep a clear conscience then our view of God become distorted and we want to ultimately blame God for what is happening in our lives. We do not doubt His power but we doubt His love.

With the pure You show Yourself pure,
And with the crooked You show Yourself twisted. Psalm 18:26

The Bible says that the way of the guilty is crooked.

The way of a guilty man is crooked,
But as for the pure, his conduct is upright. Proverbs 21:8

When we do not have a clear conscience and there is guilt in our heart then we start to see God as twisted and our actions will also become twisted towards those whom we should love. The one whom we should be loving starts not to understand our actions and their responses become different and then begins the downward spiral in the relationship.

Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. James 4:8

A double minded person does not have a pure heart. A double minded person is one who says to himself, “Should I do this or should I do that?” They go back and forth on what they should do. The double minded person will not receive help from the Lord until they confess their sin to the Lord and surrender their heart to Him and He cleanses it.

But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. I Timothy 1:5

The Lord wants us to pursue love with all people. However, we need to have a pure heart, a good conscience and a sincere heart. These are characteristics of the heart and must characterize our lives in all of our relationships. When we have these qualities then God’s love will fill our lives and hearts and will flow through us to others.

so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; and that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3:17-19

We will see the Lord and will want to be like Him. We will be secure in our relationship with Him and will not be fearful of what other think of us. We will be able to consider others more important than ourselves. We will not feel the need to control others because we will be filled with the Lord and His love for others. It will be Jesus Christ who controls us.

For the love of Christ controls us, having concluded this, that one died for all, therefore all died; and He died for all, so that they who live might no longer live for themselves, but for Him who died and rose again on their behalf. II Corinthians 5:14,15

The outcome will be far greater than what anyone can imagine. The Lord can do far more than what we can ask or think when we guard our hearts, live by faith, keep His Word and allow Him to live through us according to His power which works in us.

Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen. Ephesians 3:20,21

A Life with Desires Fulfilled

Will the Lord really fulfill your desires or will He only give you what you need but not really desire? These are questions that people ask. What does His Word say about our desires? The Lord may fulfill your desires but the sooner you realize that your desires will never fulfill you the more content and satisfied you will be in life. Jesus Christ is the only who can fulfill you. He is enough. However He delights in giving us gifts.

Psalm 20:4,5 May He grant you your heart’s desire
And fulfill all your purpose!
We will sing for joy over your victory,
And in the name of our God we will set up our banners.
May the Lord fulfill all your petitions.

May He grant you your heart’s desire and fulfill all your purpose. May He also fulfill all of your petitions. He does want you to ask Him for what is on your heart. The fact is though, most of us don’t really know what we want. We think that a lot of things will make us happy and so we long for those things. However, once you realize that He loves you perfectly and has a purpose for your life then you can learn to rest in Him and wait on Him. Don’t focus on your desires but focus on Him. That is the only way to be free from our desires controlling us.

Psalm 84:11,12 For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
The Lord gives grace and glory;
No good thing does He withhold from those who walk uprightly.
O Lord of hosts,
How blessed is the man who trusts in You!

Seek Him with all of your heart and seek to walk in His ways and obey Him. He will not withhold any good thing from you. How blessed is the person who will rest in His love for them. Do not fret. He says that He will not disappoint the one who trusts in Him.

Psalm 22:5 To You they cried out and were delivered;
In You they trusted and were not disappointed.

If He withholds something from you it is because at this time it is not good for you. You must trust Him. Learn to delight yourself in Him as you learn to trust Him.

Psalm 37:3,4 Trust in the Lord and do good;
Dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness.
Delight yourself in the Lord;
And He will give you the desires of your heart.

This phrase “cultivate faithfulness” means to feed on His faithfulness. He is faithful even when we are not. You can trust him. If you will only trust Him completely then He will give you far more than your desires. Learn to do what is right and learn His ways. He will act on your behalf and meet you.

Isaiah 64:4,5a For from days of old they have not heard or perceived by ear,
Nor has the eye seen a God besides You,
Who acts in behalf of the one who waits for Him.
You meet him who rejoices in doing righteousness,
Who remembers You in Your ways.

He is able to do far more than what we ask or think. Trust Him.

Ephesians 3:20 Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us,

Be glad in Him and let your joy be in Him. Let Him be your glory and the One is whom you rejoice. He will meet you with the blessings of good things and then you will know that He is God and does what He pleases. He is the One who gives life.

Psalm 21:1-6 O Lord, in Your strength the king will be glad,
And in Your salvation how greatly he will rejoice!
You have given him his heart’s desire,
And You have not withheld the request of his lips. Selah.
For You meet him with the blessings of good things;
You set a crown of fine gold on his head.
He asked life of You,
You gave it to him,
Length of days forever and ever.
His glory is great through Your salvation,
Splendor and majesty You place upon him.
For You make him most blessed forever;
You make him joyful with gladness in Your presence.

Only the Lord can do this in a person’s life. He can satisfy you and He can bring you to the place of total surrender of your desires and your will. Ask Him to help you and to do His work in your life. He wants to bless you but He knows that you need to delight in the Blessor rather than the blessing. He wants you to worship Him and to not have any other idols. If He is not first in our life then whatever else is first is what we worship. And if He is not first then it does not matter if he is second or forty second. He must be first in our life and we must seek Him before anything else.

A Life with Love Has an Order

Where there is love there will also be order, harmony and peace. The opposite of order and peace is disorder or chaos. When the Lord designed marriages and families He had an order for everything so that the family would work in an orderly manner and so that there would be harmony and peace. It is important to understand God’s order for the family so that when it does get out of order everyone knows what and where they need to be to reestablish the peace and harmony. There is security in order. Those under authority and leadership need to feel loved and secure.

But all things must be done properly and in an orderly manner.

I Corinthians 14:40

God’s blueprint is for the husband to be the head of the family and Jesus Christ is the head of the husband. The wife is under the husband’s authority and the children are under both the mother and the father. This structure is not about worth but about order of authority and responsibility. The greater the authority then the greater the responsibility.

Wives, be subject to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body. But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything. Ephesians 5:22-24

The church is the bride of Christ. The husband is to be the head of his bride as Christ is the head of the church. As the church is to trust and be subject to Christ, so also, the wife is to trust her husband and be subject to her husband. She is to do this as unto the Lord. The visual expression of her relationship with the Lord and her submission to the Lord is seen in her submission to her husband. She learns to trust her husband and submit to her husband through trusting the Lord and submitting to the Lord. Ultimately, it is the Lord she is trusting and submitting to.

Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, Ephesians 5:25

The Lord has given the man the headship of the family but he also has the greater responsibility. He is to lead the way in love and through love and to be an expression of the sacrificial love of Christ.

You husbands in the same way, live with your wives in an understanding way, as with someone weaker, since she is a woman; and show her honor as a fellow heir of the grace of life, so that your prayers will not be hindered. I Peter 3:7

Not only is the husband to love his wife with the same sacrificial love which God loves him but he is to live with her in an understanding manner. So much so is he to do this that if he does not then his prayers will be hindered.

In the same way, you wives, be submissive to your own husbands so that even if any of them are disobedient to the word, they may be won without a word by the behavior of their wives, as they observe your chaste and respectful behavior. I Peter 3:1,2

If a husband is not doing as the Lord instructed him then the wife is to continue to respect his position and not say a word to him. She is not to be his conscience. A man fights with his conscience and if she wants fighting in the home then this is the easiest way to get it. If she wants her husband to become like Christ and love her with a Christlike love then she needs to do as the Lord has instructed her and not say anything to him. She is not responsible for her husband but she is responsible for her behavior. She is to be chaste and respectful.

Your adornment must not be merely external—braiding the hair, and wearing gold jewelry, or putting on dresses; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God. For in this way in former times the holy women also, who hoped in God, used to adorn themselves, being submissive to their own husbands; just as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, and you have become her children if you do what is right without being frightened by any fear. I Peter 3:3-6

A wife’s husband is her lord. This word “lord” is the same Greek word as the word “Lord” in Lord Jesus Christ. If Jesus is her Lord then her husband is to be her lord. This means that he is in authority over her and she is to submit to him and obey him. Sarah obeyed Abraham and considered him her lord. She did what he told her to do without allowing fear to control her.

Now there was a famine in the land; so Abram went down to Egypt to sojourn there, for the famine was severe in the land. It came about when he came near to Egypt, that he said to Sarai his wife, “See now, I know that you are a beautiful woman; and when the Egyptians see you, they will say, ‘This is his wife’; and they will kill me, but they will let you live. Please say that you are my sister so that it may go well with me because of you, and that I may live on account of you.” It came about when Abram came into Egypt, the Egyptians saw that the woman was very beautiful. Pharaoh’s officials saw her and praised her to Pharaoh; and the woman was taken into Pharaoh’s house. Therefore he treated Abram well for her sake; and gave him sheep and oxen and donkeys and male and female servants and female donkeys and camels. Genesis 12:10-16

Abraham was not doing what was right when he asked Sarah to say that she was his sister. However, Sarah was trusting in the Lord and the Lord did not allow any harm to come to Sarah. A wife’s trust is to be ultimately in the Lord. That is the only way that she can have that quiet and gentle spirit which is precious to the Lord.

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. Honor your father and mother (which is the first commandment with a promise), so that it may be well with you, and that you may live long on the earth. Ephesians 6:1

Children are to learn to obey their parents and honor their mother and father. Children learn how to do this through their parents. When a child sees their mother honoring their father then they learn to honor him also. In the same way, when a husband honors his wife then the children will also. A son’s glory is his father so if his mother is disrespectful of her husband then she is destroying her children’s glory. A child gets their self worth from their glory so she is also destroying their self worth. A person with a poor self worth will make poor choices in life so a mother who does not honor and respect her husband is bringing about her own children’s failures in life.

And the glory of sons is their fathers. Proverbs 17:6a

When a child gets his own way then he brings shame to his mother. A mother must teach her children to do what is right and not what they want to do.

The rod and reproof give wisdom, But a child who gets his own way brings shame to his mother. Proverbs 29:15

Children need to be disciplined and they also need reproof, which is instruction on how to do what is right. A godly husband and father leads his family in the ways of the Lord and a godly mother teaches her children the ways of the Lord. As a result of God’s design for the family there will be respect, love, peace and harmony. They will also all dwell securely and joy and gladness will fill the home as a fragrant aroma.

“You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness;
Therefore God, Your God, has anointed You
With the oil of gladness above Your companions.” Hebrews 1:9

A Life that Has a Great Reward

The Lord offers a great reward to the person who will obey Him and keep his commandments.

Psalm 19:7-11 The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul;
The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.
The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart;
The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.
The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever;
The judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether.
They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold;
Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb.
Moreover, by them Your servant is warned;
In keeping them there is great reward.

Not only is there a great reward for keeping His commandments but the Lord says that your soul will be restored, you will receive wisdom, your heart will rejoice and your eyes will be enlightened. Do you need healing in your soul or wisdom and joy? Do you want insight? Then you must keep His commandments. You will have a great reward.

Matthew 5:12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

If and when you keep His commandments you will be persecuted. Again, your reward will be great and when you see the Lord you will only wish that you had obeyed more than you did. Do not fear. He will be with you.

Luke 6:35 But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men.

When you love your enemies then you will have a great reward. Trust the Lord and do what He says. You will be glad.

Hebrews 10:35,36 Therefore, do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised.

Keep trusting Him and do not throw away your confidence in Him. When you have done the will of God for your life then you will receive what He has promised. His promises are sure. So, there are three things that if you do you will receive a great reward and these are keeping his commandments, being persecuted for your faith, loving your enemies and keeping your confidence in Christ who is faithful.

 

A Life with Love Has a Destiny

People want love and most people know that they need love. If someone says that they don’t need love it is because they have been hurt and hurt brings fears of being hurt again. God did not make a person’s heart to be hurt or for anyone to be rejected. God made all of mankind to be loved and God has loved man from the beginning. God’s destiny all along has been for man to be in a love relationship with God and to be in a love relationship with others.

In love He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, Ephesians 1:4b,5

God’s destiny before He made man was for man to be in a love relationship with God. God made man for relationships, first with God and then with others. It was God’s destiny for every person that came from Adam to experience and know His love and to be able to express that love to others. When Adam and Eve sinned, God was grieved because the relationship was no longer the same. Man could not enjoy God because of His guilt. Adam and Eve’s guilt separated them from God. In a similar way, if you sin against someone else, then it is your guilt that keeps you from enjoying that other person. That person still may love you but the relationship is no longer the same until you confess your sin and receive forgiveness and are restored. Since Adam and Eve sinned every single person that was related to them received the same tendency to sin and receive guilt. The Lord needed to do something to remove the guilt so that man could be in relationship with God and enjoy the fellowship that was lost in the garden of Eden.

If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. I John 1:8,9

All of us have sinned and experience guilt from our own sin. Our sin and our guilt keep us from experiencing God’s love.

for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, Romans 3:23

God loves you. He did not come to judge us but came that we might be saved through Jesus Christ. When He comes again it will be to judge all who did not believe in Jesus and turn to Him.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. John 3:16,17

God’s wrath is poured out on the sinful actions that we do. When Christ comes again those who do not know Jesus Christ will be judged and will experience the wrath of God. Those who have believed in Christ will not be judged because Jesus Christ took their judgment and gave them eternal life.

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men Romans 1:18a

When man sins and does ungodliness and unrighteousness then man experiences God’s wrath through the consequences of the sinful actions which he chose to do. One aspect of the wrath of God that man experiences here on earth when he sins is the brokenness in the soul that feels the guilt, regret, fears and all the other consequences that we hate when we do wrong. It is this brokenness within us that causes us to realize our need for God and it is God’s love that draws us to Him. If we did not experience the consequences of sin then we could continue in our sin and never turn to the Lord. So, it is even in God’s wrath that we experience His kindness and mercy that leads us to Him.

Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, Romans 2:4,5

When someone continues to sin and does not repent and turn to God then that person stores up more wrath for themselves. Jesus Christ came to love man and to save man from experiencing God’s wrath, which all who are stubborn in their heart and do not believe in Jesus will one day receive. God did not destine man for wrath but for love. It is here on earth that we experience a taste of wrath and a taste of love but we must choose which one we want for all eternity. Without Christ we will experience God’s wrath forever but if we believe and trust in Christ then we will experience God’s love forever.

For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, I Thessalonians 5:9

He knows the separation and loneliness that sin brings. He understands the destruction and death that sin brings to a person and the brokenness in their souls and their relationships because of sin. God sent His Son, Jesus Christ, so that we might be saved from the power, penalty and presence of sin and death. Your destiny is to be in a love relationship with God and to be His child and live forever in His love.

The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance. II Peter 3:9

A Life that Is Strong

The Lord says that the one whose strength is in Him is blessed. The only way to be truly strong is to be strong in the Lord. You will be blessed if your strength is not in yourself but in the Lord.

Psalm 84:5 How blessed is the man whose strength is in You,
In whose heart are the highways to Zion!

It is His command that we be strong in the Lord and that it should be in the strength of His might.

Ephesians 6:10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might.

He must be our strength and the sooner that we realize it the more we will quit trying to be strong in ourselves.

Psalm 18:1 “I love You, O Lord, my strength.”

It is in our weakness that His power is perfected. He is glorified in our weakness.

II Corinthians 12:9 And He has said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.” Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may dwell in me.

The Bible says woe to those who put their strength in anything other than the Lord.

Isaiah 31:1 Woe to those who go down to Egypt for help And rely on horses, And trust in chariots because they are many And in horsemen because they are very strong, But they do not look to the Holy One of Israel, nor seek the Lord!

How do we become strong in the Lord. It is when we acknowledge our weakness to Him. A prayer that you can pray says, “Lord, I can’t, You never said I could, You can and You always said You would.” The Lord wants to help you. He is a very present help and is waiting for you to ask Him for help. Humility is acknowledging that you can not do it. His grace is available to all who call on Him. Ask Him today to help you do what He wants you to do.

Joshua 1:9 Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Life with Love as a Gift

Love is not a right nor is love something that we can earn. Love is a gift that God has given to us that we do not deserve.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16

God did not have to give. He gave because He loved. No one ever has to give or receive love. Love is a choice and that choice is to give love or to receive love. If it was not a choice then it would not be love. Love must be given and received to be experienced.

He came to His own, and those who were His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God. John 1:11-13

Jesus first came to His own people, the Jews, but they did not receive Him and experience His love. He also came to the world that any who wanted to receive God could and whoever received Jesus Christ would become His child. Jesus was the lamb of God who came to take away the sin of the world so that whoever would believe in Him would have eternal life and not perish.

The next day he saw Jesus coming to him and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! John 1:29

Those who receive God’s love through Jesus Christ become born again into God’s family and become recipients of the greatest love there ever was or will ever be.

Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Do not be amazed that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ John 3:5-7

When we receive God’s love then we are born into His family and become His child. We become spiritually alive. It is in our spirit that we have the assurance that we have become His child and that we know His love.

The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, Romans 8:16

When we become His child then He is the One who gives us that assurance. When someone belongs to Him then God’s Spirit confirms it through the spirit of the person that has been made alive. God restores the life to the spirit that died when Adam sinned. It is through the spirit of man that God communicates with man. When someone is spiritually dead then they can not hear God. When one becomes spiritually alive then they can hear the Lord because the relationship is restored.

My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. John 8:27,28

Jesus Christ reversed the curse of death that took place when Adam and Eve sinned and brought us life in Him.

And the testimony is this, that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son. He who has the Son has the life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have the life. I John 5:11,12

When we receive the gift of God’s love in Jesus Christ then we receive life, we are restored to our relationship with God and can fellowship with God through prayer and His Word and we become His child. There is no greater gift or greater love!

See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are. I John 3:1

Those who have received the gift of God’s love that He gave through Jesus Christ will want to spend their lives thanking Him for the incredible gift of His love.

Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift! II Corinthians 9:15

A Life that is Fulfilled

A life that is fulfilled is a life that is full. It is a life that is overflowing. A life apart from the filling of the Holy Spirit is a life that is empty. It may be full of something else but whatever else it is filled with it will leave an emptiness and a lack of satisfaction. If it is filled with yourself then your life will be miserable. If it is filled with the pursuit of money then it will leave you with the feeling of never enough. If it is filled with wine and other mind numbing substances then it will also leave you with a deeper emptiness after whatever it is wears off. The Lord said to be filled with the Holy Spirit.

Ephesians 5:18 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit,

The word dissipation means self indulgence or wasteful expenditure. The Lord wants us to be filled with Him and the way that we are filled with Him is to be filled with His Spirit. Any intoxication of anything artificial means is a self indulgence and is a substitute to being filled with the Lord.

Habakkuk 2:5 Furthermore, wine betrays the haughty man, So that he does not stay at home. He enlarges his appetite like Sheol, And he is like death, never satisfied.

Anything that we look to fulfill us or that controls us is an idol and will blind us to the truth of the One who is the true God.

Psalm 115:4-8 Their idols are silver and gold,
The work of man’s hands.
They have mouths, but they cannot speak;
They have eyes, but they cannot see;
They have ears, but they cannot hear;
They have noses, but they cannot smell;
They have hands, but they cannot feel;
They have feet, but they cannot walk;
They cannot make a sound with their throat.
Those who make them will become like them,
Everyone who trusts in them.

All other gods can not speak, see, hear, smell, feel or walk. If we trust in anything other than the Lord then we will become blind and will not see Him and we will become deaf to the things of the Lord and will no longer hear His voice. We will not feel because our heart will become hardened. We will have feet but we will not go where we need to go. We will become like what we trust in.

Joel 2:19 The Lord will answer and say to His people, “Behold, I am going to send you grain, new wine and oil, And you will be satisfied in full with them; And I will never again make you a reproach among the nations.

Trust Him to fill you. He wants to supply your needs. He will also satisfy you and you will be full. He will not let you be put to shame. He loves you. Trust Him to fulfill not only your needs but your desires.

Joel 2:26 “You will have plenty to eat and be satisfied And praise the name of the Lord your God, Who has dealt wondrously with you; Then My people will never be put to shame.

The one who is right with the Lord is considered righteous and that one will be glad in the Lord. Your life will be full and meaningful and you will have the glory of the Lord.

Psalm 64:10 The righteous man will be glad in the Lord and will take refuge in Him;
And all the upright in heart will glory.

 

 

 

A Life with Love is Faithful

Love is not a feeling, although there certainly are feelings that come and go in love, but love is not based on feelings. Love is a faithful commitment to the one loved. God is faithful and it is from Him that we learn faithfulness. Faithfulness is based on trust and love grows with faithfulness. Faithfulness means to be full of faith and when we are full of faith in the Lord then we will be faithful to do what he has called us to do in our commitments in loving others.

I glorified You on the earth, having accomplished the work which You have given Me to do. John 17:4

All of us have different work that we need to accomplish and be faithful to fulfill. When we do the work that God has given us to do then He is glorified. The Lord gives different instructions for each person in different relationships. A friend is to love at all times. A person that has a close friend through life is rich indeed.

A friend loves at all times, Proverbs 17:17a

The instructions to the husband and the wife is that they are to love and respect one another. This is the main work that God has called the husband and wife to do. When they do this then God is glorified in their marriage and they are blessed.

Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband. Ephesians 5:33

When your spouse is your best friend, favorite companion, lover, soulmate, teammate, and biggest fan then you are really blessed. Even more, when you are these to your spouse then you are still more blessed for the Lord Himself said that it is more blessed to give than to receive.

remember the words of the Lord Jesus, that He Himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’” Acts 20:35b

However, just as love is not stagnant but needs to grow and mature, we need to learn how to be the husband or wife that the Lord has designed for us. It is a work of faith that we learn as we mature in our relationships and as a person. It is in the early years of marriage that a couple learns to express their faithfulness to one another in learning to love each other and their faithfulness to God by doing the work in marriage of loving and respecting that God has called them to do.

and may the Lord cause you to increase and abound in love for one another, I Thessalonians 3:12a

A strong and loving marriage in the later years will be determined by the early years of marriage when the couple faithfully learns to love each other and meet one another’s needs. These years are sometimes more challenging with the demands that are there with jobs, children and often when money is short but it is during these years as the couple learns to work together and love each other that they become one in spirit, soul and body. Their hearts become knit together in love and the many joys, sorrows and struggles that they share will make their marriage a strong one that will last a lifetime…”until death do they part”.