Love is___________

While reading my devotional yesterday from “100 Favorite Bible Verses”, it suggested that wherever you see the word love or it, place your name there. As I inserted my name, I realized how easy it is to miss the mark of giving out and showing the love that God gives to us. I realized that even the smallest shifts in our attitudes can taint that love that God desires to be seen through His children. I repented, asking God for forgiveness and help to show His love to the world, even in the tough moments of life.

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” John‬ ‭13:34-35‬ ‭NIV‬‬

To show love to people, is to show Christ to people. Today, do your own personal love inventory and place your name where you see love and it, and in your weak places of love, repent and ask the Holy Spirit for help. We aren’t meant to do this on our own; loving people can be hard. This is why it is so key for us to lean on the Holy Spirit for strength and help. It is in our weaknesses that God’s grace comes in and bridges the gaps in our lives. It is not by our own might nor by our own power but we overcome bleak areas in our lives by the Spirit of God. So let us lean on the One whose love is perfect, and allow Him to teach us, bridging the gap and developing in us His perfect love.

God Bless!

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Known

Do you know that you are fully and completely known by God? David said in Psalm 139 verses one through four:
Lord, you have examined my heart and know everything about me. You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away. You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do. You know what I am going to say even before I say it, Lord.”
then he continued in verse 16,
You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed.”
What a revelation! There is nothing about us that God is not acquainted with; not our attitudes, our insecurities, our stubbornness, our confidences, or even the things we ponder on deep within our heart. Nothing about us is unknown to God, and nothing about us surprises Him either.
How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered!I can’t even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake up, you are still with me!” Psalm 139:17-18
Even after knowing everything about us, the good, the bad and the indifference, we are told that God’s thoughts of us are still GOOD, and that they outnumber the grains of sand in all the earth. How can God love us this much?! I cannot fathom the awesome wonder of His majesty. I am mind blown every time I read this passage. To be loved beyond our own humanity is the nature of who God really is, and knowing that is such a comfort to my soul, like a hot cup of cocoa on a blistering, cold day. It just melts all of my worries away.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” John 3:16-17
He sent Christ into the word to save us because He loves us. Not because we are perfect and make the right choices and we are kind to everyone, but because He loves us and He knows we can’t get it together on our own. The manner of love He chooses to love us with supersedes our own understanding.
Below are the lyrics to a song called ‘Known’ by an artist named Tauren Wells, along with a link to its YouTube video. On rough days, and days that I just need to be reminded of God’s love and presence in my life, I put this song on repeat. And by the third or fourth time it plays, I am up on my feet, and singing with joy to the top of my lungs. I hope that this does for you what it somehow always does for me. Save this song to a YouTube playlist, or add it to your phone, because there will always come a day that we will need our chins lifted up and be reminded that we are not loved in a limited way by God, but that we are fully loved and fully known by Him! God Bless!
Known by Tauren Wells
It’s so unusual it’s frightening
You see right through the mess inside me
And you call me out to pull me in
You tell me I can start again
And I don’t need to keep on hiding
I’m fully known and loved by You
You won’t let go no matter what I do
And it’s not one or the other
It’s hard truth and ridiculous grace
To be known fully known and loved by You
I’m fully known and loved by You
It’s so like You to keep pursuing
It’s so like me to go astray, ooh
But You guard my heart with Your truth
The kind of love that’s bullet proof
And I surrender to Your kindness, oh
I’m fully known and loved by You
You won’t let go no matter what I do
And it’s not one or the other
It’s hard truth and ridiculous grace
To be known fully known and loved by You
I’m fully known and loved by You
How real, how wide
How rich, how high is Your heart
I cannot find the reasons why
You give me so much
How real, how wide
How rich, how high is Your heart
Now, I cannot find the reasons why
You give me so much
I’m fully known (fully known) and loved by You
You won’t let go (no you won’t let go) no matter what I do
And it’s not one or the other
It’s hard truth and ridiculous grace
To be known fully known and loved by You
I’m fully known and loved by You
It’s so unusual it’s frightening
I’m fully known and loved by You
Lyrics taken from google.com. Bible passages taken form biblegateway.com. Video link taken from YouTube.com.

 

God Over Everything

design (17) “Remain in Me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in Me.” John 15:4

Before we were born, God created us in our mother’s womb with a predisposition to Himself. He created us in such a way, that at our core we would have a desire for something greater; something greater that could only be filled by Him. And if not attended to, it would get covered up by all of life’s responsibilities, desires, and demands.

During some personal time with God, He helped me understand how important it is to have Him in the right position of my life. He spoken into my heart, “All you have to do is stay connected to the Vine and the fruit will grow. Spending time with Me should become a habit like brushing your teeth, or filling your stomach with food. Our time together develops a regular appetite for Me in your life. Over the course of your life, habits that draw you away from Me have already been developed. So even though I created you with the natural disposition to My presence, it can become covered up by things in life, like boxes stacked one on top of the other; putting the box you think you need the least at the bottom of the pile…Me. Then, life’s other responsibilities begin to get piled on top of My box. So when life gets crazy, and you need Me, you have to fight to get passed all the other “boxes” that have covered Me up. There has to come a time when a re-positioning happens in a person’s life when all those other things get removed and I become a priority, and placed in the highest position.”

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” Matthew 6:33 NKJV

Many times, we decide to take care of our own business first, and when we feel up to it, or if we have the time, then we take care of God’s business. This is not what He desires. He wants true fellowship with His children. He craves for us to be close to Him at all times.

He doesn’t want what is left of us, but He wants all of us.

We tend to put God on the back burner because of the things piled up in our lives that overshadow His presence and importance in our lives. As a result, we become  self-reliant and dull in comparison to what He originally intended. He longs to be our one and only source and for us to cling to Him, but instead we have allowed life, in many ways, to make us blind and deaf to Him.

“For as the loincloth clings to the waist of a man, so I made the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah cling to me, declares the LORD, that they might be for me a people, a name, a praise, and a glory, but they would not listen.” Jeremiah 13:11 ESV

Reflect on your life and ask yourself, “What has caused my ears and eyes to be closed to Christ?” Then ask Him to search you and reveal the root of this.

“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:24-25

God loves to examine us. With every examination, our eyes and ears open up more and more to the areas of our lives that we have become closed off to our Father. This draws us into Him, and it strengthens our relationship. He is our lifeline, and we can do nothing truly good and fruit producing without Him. 

I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:5 NIV

One day while sitting at the lake, as I quieted myself to hear the Lord speak, He told me, “When you spend time with Me, it gives Me the opportunity to pour things into you, and to also take some things out of you; things you don’t even realize are present in your life. It allows Me to place things on your heart to pray for, in your life and in the world. It brings humility and plants seeds within you. And when you continue to come to Me, even when things are rough in your life, I am still able to produce good fruit in your life for people to eat on and be nourished.”

Our Creator loves working on us, even in the harsh weather life brings. Some of the greatest adversities in our lives produce some of the most amazing fruit. Some of the greatest pain we experience has the potential to create incredible beauty in the lives of others.

 It’s not easy staying connected to the Vine in the midst of all of lives responsibilities and burdens, but the only way to produce Godly fruit is to stay in continuously connected to Christ. He wants to show His glory through us and to us. Reflect on where you have placed Him in your life, and ask Him to help you put Him in His proper place. Draw closer to Him and watch the beauty that begins to blossom through and in your life.  

If God

“If God” by Casey J made my heart smile the other day, and I thought I’d share it. It reminded me of how much God loves and cares for us, and when we feel like no one is there, His Spirit is always present. Enjoy! The lyrics are below with a link to the music video. Happy Sunday and God bless.

“If God”

What shall we say to these things
There’s still cancer
And so much disease
What shall we say to these things
There’s so much violence
It’s getting hard to believeSo many questions
But still one answer

If God be for me
Who can be against me
If God is with me
Whom shall I fear
If no one knows me
Still His heart adores me
I am safe, I am loved, I am healed

If God be for me
Who can be against me
If God is with me
Whom shall I fear
If no one knows me
Still His heart adores me
I am safe, I am loved, I am healed
It’s only because

Oh precious is the flow
That makes me white as snow
No other fount I know
Nothing but the blood of Jesus

You said You’re for me
Who can be against me
You said You’re with me
Whom shall I fear
If no one knows me
Your heart adores me
We are safe, we are loved, we are…

If You’re for me
Who can be against me
If You’re with me
Whom shall I fear
If no one knows me
Still Your heart adores me
I am safe, I am loved, I am healed

If You’re for me
Who can be against me
If You’re with me
Whom shall I fear
If no one knows me
Still Your heart adores me
I am safe, I am loved, I am healed

 

Casey J – If God / Nothing But The Blood

Lyrics taken from http://www.azlyrics.com