Friday, September 21, 2012

I want to live like that....

"I have told you this that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.  My command is this, to love others as I have loved you."  John 15:11-12

I have been thinking about loving people lately.  This was in my reading today:

We have come to know (realize, feel, understand) and have believed (have confidence, faith, trust in) the love that God has for us.  Whoever lives(abides, remains) in love, lives in God and God in them." 1 John 4:16

This part of the 1 John verse "whoever lives in love, lives in God" really stuck out to me.  I want to live in God!  I want his love and life flowing through me at all times, I want the joy of the Lord!  So I began thinking, and asking God  "How do I live in love?"

The first thing I realized is in order for me to be able love people the way God wants me to, I have to be filled with His love first.  I, then can love others through Him and His strength.  His love is strong, unconditional and everlasting.  That isn't something I can muster up, God alone is the author and source of that kind of love.  It was truly life changing for me when I realized God doesn't stop loving me when I mess endures forever, it is not based on me, but on him and his character.  As I receive, trust and rely on His love for me that never fails, it will flow through me to those who need it.  "When you spend time with Jesus, He changes you and then you can go and change the world! "-Christine Caine.  It's so true it all starts with Him! We can't expect to show love to others if we don't spend time in his presence, basking in His love and letting it change and impact us.  

Secondly, He put 1 Corinthians 13 on my heart.  Treating every person we interact with (not just the nice ones) with these things in my mind and heart will change the world around us.  And remember, this list looks impossible, but with God the impossible suddenly becomes possible.  Doing the impossible is in his very nature (what comes natural to Him), that is what He does.

To live in love is to:
Be patient (opposite of being quick tempered) with people
Be kind (full of gentleness and ready to serve) to others
Not be jealous (envious of others abilities, friendships, positions) 
Not boast (brag on myself) 
Not be arrogant (talking pridefully) to people
Not act unbecomingly (improperly) ever
Not seek my own interests, but that of others
Not be easily angered (or emotionally provoked) by people 
Keep no record of wrong done from others
Think no evil of others (or have wicked, rotten thoughts)
Not rejoice when injustice happens 
Rejoices in truth, telling the truth and be straightforward
Cover, conceal, bear up ALL THINGS
Believes and have faith in (I think of this as in to have faith that God can change anything/anyone) 
Never loses hope (expects and actively waits on God to be faithful)
Remains and endures (this happens by God's power)
Not fail or fall (as under condemnation)

(Exhaustive definitions from the Greek, Strongs Concordance)

What a list!!  If we could live like this, the world would be turned upside down with the love of God. Through Jesus, the strength and the help of the Holy Spirit we can do this.  Jesus himself declared "With God ALL THINGS are possible."'Matthew 19:26b. I tell you, I want to live like that, to live in love, to live in God.  This song basically describes what I am desiring, a must listen to!

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