1 John 4:7-12 NLT
Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. 8 But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love. 9 God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. 10 This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. 11 Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. 12 No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us.
It was about 1981 or 1982 when our children’s choir began to practice for a presentation at church. We were so excited. Every Tuesday in July we would do something real fun as well as spend a couple hours learning some great music. I was eleven.
The heart of that kid’s musical was the first two verses of the Scripture above. All of the other songs and lines were based on relationships and loving people the way Jesus loved people. Those songs and that time in life made a huge impression on my life.
Church had been a part of our family since way before I was born. It has been over 30 years, and that song continues to ring in my heart and through my mind. Love is from God, and love is a big part of my life. That love has filled in, filled out and began to take shape as I have been able to share it with others in tangible ways and not just with lyrics from a song or words from my mouth or on a page.
Love is an action verb, and the reason we love others is because God loves us. #LoveWins because God loved us because we understand love, felt loved or knew how to give love to others.
Take some time to get a great foundation of God’s love:
CONTINUE TO LOVE OTHERS … the Greek translation of this phrase makes this much stronger than the English does. It means to keep on, keeping on loving others until you can’t love or live any more.
ANYONE WHO LOVES IS A CHILD OF GOD … love proves we belong to our Father. We are not illegitimate children. Some people say they know God or are connected to him, but their actions or lack of actions say otherwise. Living God and loving others proves we are his.
BY SENDING HIS SON … God proved His love. There was nothing better or bigger He could give us. His only son makes life possible and makes our lives abundant.
REAL LOVE … SACRIFICE … FULL EXPRESSION IN US … this thing we got from God, real love, is not something we just learn about. It really is something we come to know and experience. It is heart knowledge that makes it was to action in our lives.
Love comes out of our lives as sacrifice. It is not always easy to love. To love is always right. May our love be always seasoned with the full expression of who our God is, gracious and unconditionally in love and loving people!