Tag Archives: jesus

There is a COST for LOVE…(Day 26) What Is Love? Challenge

you are not of this worldImage Source : Love Changes Everything

When we become christians and decide to live a life of submission and LOVE to God there is always a price to pay. We must always decide between choosing a life that is temporarily “fulfilling” or to look at the bigger picture and decide to have an ETERNAL mindset….

In today’s scriptures (Day 26 Of the What Is Love? Challenge) Jesus says, that once we follow him we should expect to be hated by this world just as it hated him…

John 15:14-21  (ESV)

14 You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants,  for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you. 17 These things I command you, so that you will love one another.

18 “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. 19 If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. 20 Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. 21 But all these things they will do to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me.

There are four main ideas in today’s scriptures, the first one being our relationship with God. Jesus says, we are no longer servants of God/Jesus but friends. This is because there is now transparency in our relationship, servants usually receive orders from their masters and just accept is as it is, without really understanding why. But Jesus became the living word, he restored our relationship with God and gave us wisdom and understanding concerning God’s plan.

Secondly, Jesus specifically chose and appointed us to bear fruit…bearing fruit means we are to conceive that which is filled within us due to his wisdom and love. When we bear fruit, we receive power and authority from God. Because of this whatever we ask in Jesus’ name, as long as it is within God’s WILL, it will be granted to us.

Third, we’re reminded once again TO LOVE EACH OTHER, this is the greatest command. Ultimately it all comes down to this…if we don’t get anything else Jesus has taught us or understand anything about God’s plan, we shall always default to LOVE, that’s what it’s all about.

Last, naturally the world will hate what we stand for, if they hated Jesus to the point of crucifying him, and he was perfect in every single way…then what of us mere humans who are flawed and just trying to follow his footsteps? we can’t chose to follow Jesus and expect the world to love us, because we stand for different things…the world does not know God or respect his word so it won’t understand what we’re about, love us or respect what we stand for. We must always remember we are NOT of this WORLD, we are of GOD, living in this world, which is temporary and fickle, all will pass but he remains the same – TODAY, TOMORROW and FOREVER more…choose your side wisely.

Love always,

XOXO

Dee



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



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

john14v21n27

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



Do nothing out of Selfish Ambition…(Day 22) What Is Love? Challenge

phillipians 2: 1 - 11

This is perhaps the most “SELF” driven time, than any other time in history…although social media is supposed to connect people, it seems like it’s main purpose is to advertise SELF

look at me…

look at what I have,

look at who I’m with,

look at what I’ve done,

look at where I am,

look at what I’ve achieved,

look at what I’m doing…

this ME/I centered WORLD places people’s value on what they can bring to the table and what they can offer… this is the currency for relationships…

But God’s standard for RELATIONSHIPS are so much higher as we see in today’s scripture…(Day 22 of the What Is Love? Challenge)

Philippians 2:1-11  (NIV)

Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

Who, being in very nature God,
    did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
rather, he made himself nothing
    by taking the very nature of a servant,
    being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
    he humbled himself
    by becoming obedient to death—
        even death on a cross!

Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
    and gave him the name that is above every name,
10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father.

 

Honestly, this is one of my favorite bible verses because, I’ve lived it!!! I’ve been in relationships where people put their Selfish Ambition and vain conceit above the relationship you share….

I’ve been in relationships where people are only there because they can get something from you and once you can’t offer them what they need or you need something, they Vamos…

I’ve also been in situations where people don’t see the value you can bring them so they chose to ignore you, look down on you or even disrespect you!!!

character

In this world there’s a hierarchy, where most people will only give you the time of the day or put in effort if they know you can be beneficial to them somehow either in present time or in the future…

However, Kingdom standards say our calling as christians is to walk in humility serving God and others, following the great character of Christ…

Even though we can do nothing for Christ, he died for us…

he showed great character by serving us even though we had nothing to offer him nor can we repay him for the sacrifice he’s done for us…that’s TRUE LOVE!

Jesus became a servant, he became the lowest in the hierarchy of this world while he is the highest in God’s eyes…

he could’ve said, “there’s nothing these humans can offer me…” “why should I bother while they are ungrateful….”

he could’ve abused his Godly power and majesty by using it for his own gain, advantage or selfish ambitions…

yet he walked in humility, humbled himself and served us…

as the body of Christ this is exactly how we’re supposed to treat others…Our greatest example is Jesus Christ and we’re supposed to emulate him in our earthly relationships…

not to look down, disrespect or ignore those who have ‘nothing’ to offer us…actually quite the opposite, we’re supposed to serve others no matter where they are in the worldly “hierarchy”…

Just like Jesus we’re called to Serve others, walk in humility like he did and value others above ourselves…

and that’s the Kingdom standard for relationships…not living for SELF rather living to Serve God and others. Everything’s for his Glory. Not living for our own Selfish Ambitions, Vain Conceit, earthly desires but living within His will…saying Not my Will LORD but May your will be done.

Love always,

XOXO,

Dee