Monthly Archives: July 2017

Love Is Sacrificial…(Day 25) What Is Love? Challenge

love is sacrificial

When most of us think about LOVE, we often think about it in the context of romantic relationships…we think of the emotions that come with “falling in love” with someone. But in today’s scriptures (Day 25 – What Is Love? Challenge),  we learn that God’s definition of Love is SACRIFICE…it’s not a feeling that grows hot or cold based on how other people treat us… love doesn’t cease to exist because our emotions have grown cold…it’s a constant CHOICE we have to make.

John 15:9-13 (ESV)

As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. 10 If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. 11 These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.

12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends.

Naturally, we have a hard time following God’s commandments because it goes against our fleshy sinful nature. But if we LOVE God and want to abide in his LOVE we have to make the conscious choice to keep his commandments, that’s the only way we can find true joy in this world.

Jesus says, we’re to show the same type of love to one another, we have to consciously make the choice to love one another even when we don’t feel like it…this is LOVE.

If you’re a parent or are married, then you know that a lot of times you have to do things that you don’t feel like doing…you have to wake up in the middle of the night to soothe a crying baby, or a sick child while, you had a stressful day, are sick yourself or while you’d rather catch up on sleep.

You have to wake up early in the morning before everyone else and make sure you get everything ready for your family, to start the day…all these actions are those of LOVE…sometimes your children will test your limits because of their defiant behaviour but you CHOSE to continue loving them anyway. Sometimes your spouse will disappoint you and hurt you but you have to chose to continue loving them anyway… LOVE is INTENTIONAL, we chose to love others inspite of their flaws.

When we chose to follow God’s commandments we’re building the muscle of SACRIFICE, OBEDIENCE, SUBMISSION and LOVE, if we can be OBEDIENT to God, if we can SUBMIT to God and LOVE him, then it becomes easier to do the same for others.

Jesus says, the greatest life is laying one’s life for his own friends…this is what Jesus did, he left his Holy throne of Majesty, to take upon a human body, to live like we do, to be tempted like we do, to experience shame, pain and suffering like we do…

Even though Jesus was God and loved humanity deeply and was willing to give up his own life as a sacrifice, he was also human and his human side was weak…he had to fast and pray intensely to overcome his flesh. He asked God if there was any other way he can save humanity without having to “drink from the cup” of suffering but ultimately he surrendered and submitted to God’s will. He chose to be obedient and sacrifice his own life for his “friends”.

Luke 22:42 (ESV)

42 saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.”

We may not have to go to this extent to show LOVE for others but we’re still called to “carry ” our cross each day, to cast aside our pride and ego, to overcome our carnal needs and desires, to “die” to ourselves each day, to “crucify” our sinful nature each day and to CHOSE to submit and obey God’s commandments, this is how we LOVE God and others.

Love always,

XOXO,

 Dee



It is not human strength or power that accomplishes His will

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As human beings we sometimes feel invincible, we take for granted the abilities, talents, power, strength, personalities, physical characteristics and everything that we have. We feel as though, we acquired these things ourselves.

We think we’re the boss of us and of this universe and we conveniently overlook the power of God that works through us…

We must always remember, that all that we are and all that we have, is not a product of our own doing, but a gift from an almighty God, who through his spirit gives us the power to accomplish his will…

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Zechariah 4:6 (NIV)

So he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power,but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty.

Love Always,

XOXO,

Dee

 



If you love me….(Day 24) What Is Love? Challenge

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As christians we love to talk a lot about God’s love for us…

about how much God loves us,

how he loves us unconditionally,

how he created us in love,

how even when no one loves us, he still does,

how he paid the ultimate price for our sins by dying on the cross,

how nothing can separate us from his love,

how he protects, provides, heals…

It’s almost like we’re bragging, but what’s there not to brag about? Our God is AWESOME and there is NOTHING out there like his LOVE…

But no one likes to be in a one sided relationship… Thank God, God is not human, that he understands our fleshy struggles, he continually pursues us, he waits patiently for us to come back to him, even after we’ve turned our back away from him over and over and over again…

He’s always standing right outside our door, knocking and waiting for us to let him in…

In today’s scriptures (Day 24- What Is Love? Challenge) Jesus, talks about how we can show our love for him and what happens when we do…

John 14:21-27 (ESV)

21 Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” 22 Judas (not Iscariot) said to him, “Lord, how is it that you will manifest yourself to us, and not to the world?” 23 Jesus answered him, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. 24 Whoever does not love me does not keep my words. And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father’s who sent me.

25 “These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. 26 But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid.

Sin automatically separates and alienates us from God and his love…

The only way to let God into our hearts, the only way God can manifest himself to us and make a home in our hearts, is by us keeping his commandments and his word, by doing so we’re showing him that we love him…this is our invitation for him to come and abide in us.

Darkness and Light cannot co-exist, therefore, if we choose not to follow his word we’re automatically closing our door on him and he can not exist within us…when we sin we’re alienating ourselves from God.

In the beginning when Adam and Eve were in the garden of Eden, they were in such proximity with God, they walked with him and received guidance from God…they were in communion with God and surrounded by his love. But sin came between them and God…and the consequence of sin was to be separated from God and his presence.

Jesus came to restore this relationship, and because of this, God can now abide in us when we simply obey him and follow his words and commandments.

God understand that we’re humans, we’re weak and that we struggle with our carnal desires, that’s why he sent us the Holy Spirit as our helper…so we don’t have to do this alone. The Holy Spirit fills us with love and wisdom. He guides and teaches us how to live a life that glorifies and pleases God.

Sin fills us with guilt, shame, fear and takes away our peace…sin is a heavy burden. We usually think by not following God’s way that we’re gaining freedom, but that freedom comes with a heavy price, we lose peace and his love.

When we have God on our side, everything else seems so insignificant in comparison. How can you be worried about the troubles of this world when you have a mighty God who created the world?

Matthew 10 :28 (ESV

And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.

They say actions speak louder than words, God has showed us with his actions, time and time again just how much he loves us… how can we show with our actions that we love God?

Love always,

XOXO

Dee



When God makes you wait….

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We live in a fast paced world…everything moves at the speed of lightning, everything you want or need can be acquired at your fingertips…this has made us really impulsive and impatient…

One of the characteristics we need to develop as christians is PATIENCE, however, this is something that is really rare these days. In the bible, PATIENCE is one of the fruits of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), it’s something we bear when God’s spirit lives within us…

When God gives you a dream or a vision to fulfill for your life, he doesn’t simply grant it to you, he makes you go through a long process where he develops your character. God is not a genie who simply hands us things, but he makes sure that we have grown spiritually, that we have attained spiritual maturity and are ready to handle the responsibility that comes with the destiny he has for us.

Godmakesyouwait

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In the bible, there are many stories where God makes a covenant/promise, but it takes years and years before the person sees the promise come to manifestation.

It took about 25 Years from the time God promised Abraham and Sarah that they would have a child to when they actually had Isaac. When God first made the promise to Abraham, he was 75 years old, he finally had Isaac when he was 100 years old Genesis 12 – 25

It took about 100 years from when God told Noah to build the ark, to the time when it started to rain and the flood destroyed humanity. Genesis 5:32-10:1

Joseph received God’s promise that he would be in a position of power and authority, through dreams. He had these dream when he was a young boy..however, he ended up being sold into slavery and had to wait 13 years, enduring many trials, before this dream came into fruition Genesis 37 -50

Moses was destined by God to deliver the Israelites from Egypt and to bring them to the promise land, it took about 80 years to prepare him for his role and 40 of those years were spent in the wilderness Exodus 2  to Deuteronomy 34

Jacob had to wait 7 years before Rachel was given to him as his wife Genesis 29:18-30

David had to wait about 15 years from the time he was chosen to become king until he was actually king 1 Samuel and 2 Samuel

The lesson to be learnt, God doesn’t just hand us our calling or blessing, he makes sure we develop a character worthy of our calling/blessing.

When we wait for God’s promise we usually go through a lot of trials and tests, these are often situations where our faith is tested, our endurance is built and the fruit of patience is being developed…during this time, we learn to have full dependence on God, we relinquish control of our lives and have intimacy with God…

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James 1:2-4  (ESV)

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

Love Always,

XOXO,

Dee