About two months ago, I was praying for God to show me how to experience the love described in 1 Corinthians Chapter 13. Well, I thought I knew what that would look like, but as usual, God is full of surprises! You see, while my life was full of good works—on so many levels I was not full of the love of God. The Bible describes this deluded condition:
“Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I have become sounding brass or a clanging cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, but have not love, it profits me nothing.”1 Corinthians 13:1-3 NKJV
The most powerful language we can ever speak with our life is God’s language of love. But sometimes we get lost in our good works. But to really learn to live in love, we need to understand God’s generous forgiveness towards us and allow humility to produce HIS enduring love within us. If you have not read the two links in the last sentence, please do. They attempt to capture the transforming lessons God is teaching me about how to live in His love. You see, God had to yank the rug out from under my easy chair in order for me to begin to learn about how to love HIS way. Love is hard work. I’m still on this journey, but God is shining the light of truth in this incredibly difficult time of darkness! Praise be to HIM!
I wouldn’t have it any other way.
You see, to know the experience of His love, means we must understand His forgiveness. We owe Him so much and by comparison the offenses of others are a mere drop in the bucket. So to have the opportunity to exercise forgiveness over and over again, is to have the opportunity to spend some of the 4 trillion dollars’ worth of forgiveness God has given us and—even if we have to give a measly five dollars every five minutes—it isn’t going to make a discernible dent in our vast bank account!
The Bible says that it is more blessed to give than to receive—this especially applies to forgiveness!
God’s forgiveness to us produces humility. Humility draws us closer to God, Who is the source of love. When we are close to God, His love flows freely out of us. Because God can endure all things, God hopes all things, God believes all things, God bears all things…so we can too.
God’s love is the most amazing experience on this earth!
But we can’t experience God’s love without first experiencing HIM. First, we must be born again, and our soul and spirit made alive in HIS presence. Then, we must passionately pursue him. This means we must make HIM the center of our life. We must pursue holiness according to HIS Word. We must pursue a relationship with HIM. Believe it or not, He LONGS for us! Just read this precious expression of His heart:
“Therefore the Lord will wait, that He may be gracious to you; and therefore He will be exalted, that He may have mercy on you.
For the Lord is a God of justice; blessed are ALL those who wait for Him. For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem; you shall weep no more.
He will be very gracious to you at the sound of your cry; when He hears it, He will answer you.
And though the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, yet your teachers will not be moved into a corner anymore, but your eyes shall see your teachers. Your ears shall hear a word behind you, saying,
‘This is the way, walk in it!‘
Whenever you turn to the right hand or whenever you turn to the left.”Isaiah 30 :18-21 NKJV
Wow—this is God’s heart! He waits to be gracious to us! He loves us so much that He died for us when we were his enemies. He draws us with a heart of purest love. You will never have a better friend than God.
God becomes our greatest desire when we realize that He is better than anything or anyone else in our life.
When we desire Him, He changes our heart. He does not draw close to a heart that doesn’t want Him–would you? He gives us free will, which includes the choice to love Him. Love for God never happens at gunpoint or out of guilt. It happens when we recognize how perfect His goodness is. Then, His goodness leads us to turn from our sin and we fall in love with Him. The Bible says:
Do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?” (Romans 2:4)
When we are constantly surrendering our heart to God, His love becomes our heartbeat.
He makes our heart as alive with HIS love—as our body is with breath. We are filled with His Spirit. When we passionately seek God, He promises: “I will give them one heart, and a new spirit I will put within them. I will remove the heart of stone from their flesh and give them a heart of flesh.” (Ezekiel 11:19)
Love is God’s powerful language and it requires few words; its action speaks more powerfully than words.
We would love to hear your thoughts about this devotional. Did God speak to you or challenge your daily walk with him? Or is there a topic that you would like Kimberly to cover or expound on? Please share with us in the comments below.
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