Posted by kellyanneonline.com
From the popular song of the 60’s sang by the Beetles “Love is All You Need” to Tina Turners’ 80’s pop song “What’s Love Got to do with it?”, indeed, love is what makes the world go around.
But just what is love? And why is it so important? Why did Jesus command that we love one another as He loved? What does love have to do with it, anyway? Is it really all we need? Let’s jump in and explore!
Love, defined in the Greek/Hebrew, is agape love, or unconditional love. Defined as the love our heavenly Father has, it is His attitude toward His son, the human race, and how we, as believers, should behave toward one another. As believers, we are familiar with John 3:16: For God so LOVED the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever shall believe in Him shall not perish, but have everlasting life. LOVE is God’s gift to us. LOVE sent Jesus to the cross. Agape is divine love. It is the heart of God. It is what God gives to us, so that we in turn, can give it to others. In order to have agape love, we must know Christ. We cannot give what we do not have.
Let’s look at John 13:34-35. We are to love one another as Jesus loves us. Let’s read it: A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another. My friends, to love is a mandate, not something we do only if we feel up to it, or if we think it’s deserved. Jesus says that everyone will know that we are His if we love one another. It’s a fruit of the spirit, (Galatians 5:22-23) and we are known by our fruit. (We’ll jump into the rest of the fruit later, in other studies.)
Can I be honest? My natural father wasn’t exactly Father of the Year. For years I viewed God with the same set of eyes I did him. Our earthly view of who a father is can and does distort our view of who God really is. In order to receive all the love God has for us, we have to readjust our view.
Read 1 Corinthians 13 . Yes. The entire thing. I’ll wait.
If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
Friends, what you read is the blueprint for our love walk. It is the backbone of who we are as Christ followers. Is it easy? Nope. But then, nothing worthwhile ever is. Remember, grace is what saved us, but it was LOVE that sent Jesus to the Cross. It was because God so LOVED that we can enjoy eternity with Him.
I want to leave you with Jeremiah 31:3: The Lord appeared to us in the past, saying: I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness. Yes, beloved, He has loved us with an everlasting love. His love never fails. His love the one thing that we are sure of in an ever-changing world of uncertainty. I wanted to start my devotionals with love because I believe in the driving force that it has. It is God’s love that has brought all of us our salvation. But it doesn’t stop there. We now have to keep the flame going. We are the torch carriers. We are the ones to carry the Light in an ever-darkening world. Are you willing to show your light to keep the torch going?
Father, help us so that we are the carriers of Your light. Help us to show the love and the light You have so others may see You in us. ~Amen.
Originally posted at kellyanneonline.com