Tuesday, February 23, 2016

relationships matter and love does

John 3:16  NASB
“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.

Love does.  It just does.  Life is that simple.  When you love, you do something about your life and the lives of the people around you.  Love reaches out and does something when the struggle is real.

What happens when the crisis comes in to your life?  Often we turn to the things or better yet to the people that give us the most strength, and those ties ought to be the ones that make us stronger.  There are people we have known for a long time that make us stronger.  Why is it we often go to those who really aren’t for us?

The pain of the world is always heavy on my heart.  You know that.  The plight of our homeless friends is one I will continue to share and seek to help with.  I am often saddened by the devastation of addiction.  It tears lives apart, it ruins families, and it does damage to every thing in it’s path.  That is why we have to go to what gives us strength.

Love goes beyond the normal or natural to make a difference.  Love thinks outside of the box.  Love steps in when everyone steps out.  Love does something when the world says do nothing.

What is it like when there is an absence of love?  It is a time of pain and destruction.  Often that is the place or the time when we turn inward rather than to others.  This is seen in depression, in destructive behaviors and in giving all away for nothing.  When love is not present, trouble, big trouble is close by.  That is when we need love.

Nehemiah is one of my favorite stories in the entire Bible.  It was a time when God’s people had an absence of love, and that led them to believe an absence of love.  But Nehemiah wouldn’t stand for it.

In Nehemiah chapter 2 we find something called a “the crisis of believe”.  It is the time when you learn what the problem is and do something about it.  We have been there.  We have been at the place where we knew there was a problem, and we did nothing.  Right?  Then there were or are times when we see the difficulties and it is obvious that we can and must do something.

Nehemiah showed those around him, his partners and his opponents, how to stand firm and confident on what God put on His heart.  It is when we waver that we lead others to waver.  The people related to us, friends, family or others, are impacted by our responses and choices.

Relationships matter.  In fact that is where love is needed the most and often found the least.  We’d rather our feelings be ok or our pleasures be met than to really love people the way God does.

Relationships are tough.  They have to be worked at.  God’s kind of love is not based on conditions and is selfless.  That love seeks the best for others because it seeks what it needs.  That kind of love is not easy.  Not easy to give.  How do we really show others we love them?

God began the process.  He loved us first.  He will love us always.  His love goes beyond our feelings, and it is a fact.  His LOVE DOES more than we will ever know.

God is for you too.  He is seeking you.  His desire is to show you the best He has and to invite you to enjoy it too.  No, it is not always easy, life that is.  But God’s best for us is always wrapped in His love for us.  We can know, but there many people, maybe even us, who push His love away or even disconnect themselves from what God is doing.

Psalm 139:23-24 (NASB)
Search me, O God, and know my heart; Try me and know my anxious thoughts; And see if there be any hurtful way in me, And lead me in the everlasting way.

Seek God and even ask God to search you.  Respond to what God says and allow Him to use those findings to make you and those around you stronger.

By living out the love of God in our lives we have a deeper impact on others.  Like Bob Goff says, “when we love like Jesus loves, you’ll live like Jesus lives.”

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