Monday, August 31, 2020

Love Is the Answer

In the book of Revelation, John records messages from Jesus to seven different churches. After 
praising the church at Ephesus for their hard work and patient endurance - for exposing false apostles and suffering for Him, He says this:

 “But I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place—unless you repent.”

Revelation 2: 4,5

It seems a harsh indictment for a church that even Jesus said was doing all the right things. However He wanted them to know and understand that without love for God and for one another their works were empty and meaningless.  Somewhere along the line, they had made the choice to walk away from their deep love for God and others and simply do the things they had always done.

We know the words of scripture apply not only to those living at that time but to every generation that follows. They’re as relevant for us today as they were for the people attending the church at Ephesus. What, then, can we do if we find our hearts growing cold or distant from the Lord? How do we rekindle the love we had when we first knew Him?

I found a song by Mark Lowry that I think may help us. Here are a few of the lyrics:

“I knew a man from Decatur

  Said I’m leaving’ my wife

  I can’t stand her; I hate her.

 Then a wise friend said, ‘Make a list

  Of the good things about her.’

  He reads it every mornin’

  Now he can’t live without her.”

(“Whatcha Need” )

Counting blessings, being grateful for who God is and what He has given us is life changing. When we number the ways He pours out His love, it touches the very heart of us. It’s been proven over and over again, making a list of the things we are thankful for enriches our lives. It opens our eyes to the miracles around us:

  • The sunrise coloring the horizon with glorious color
  • Our homes - sheltering and keeping us safe
  • The smile on a loved one’s face
  • The miracle of a newborn baby
  • The daily provision from the hand of a loving Father
  • Flowers in a myriad of color and shape
  • Rain soaking the dry earth
  • Our God who hears and answers prayer
  • His Word - living and powerful and changing our lives
  • Friends who love us
  • Peace in the midst of the storm
  • Promises that never fail

It becomes a never-ending song of praise to the One who loves us and gives us every good thing. How can we not love Him with a deep abiding love? From that well of love will flow a stream of love for those around us.  

This love will change us. It will change the people God brings into our lives. It will change our world. Truly it is the only thing that will change our world.