Hello and welcome to another Devotional. We give God all the glory for His love, promises ,faithfulness, grace ,mercy and protection. You will need a journal / notebook /diary / pens and markers. This month our weekly devotional is going to focus on Love and Today’s topic is : Our Love For Others.
1 Peter 4:8 BSB Version
Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.
And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins.
John 15:12 states "This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you." This was our Lord and SavIor Jesus Christ speaking. Jesus went to the cross for all of us including those in the world because He loved us and died for us so we can be saved from condemnation. He made that decision out of pure love for us. It’s really sad that so many people claim to be Christians and yet they have no love in their hearts for God, Jesus, The Holy Spirit and others. I’ve heard Christians boldly declare that they love the Lord and yet they don’t apply His love in their lives. I’ve been in churches where people sit next to each other and do not greet one another until the Preacher, Elder, Deacon or somebody says “turn to your neighbour on your left and greet them.” Is that really the love of Christ that we say is in us? In our homes , in our communities , work places , societies can people really see the Love of God in us or they question why we claim to be Christian at all because of our actions that don’t reflect Christ in us?
I want to share with you a story I personally witnessed in 2014. A friend of mine invited me to a Friday evening church service and I had been praying about it because I don’t just go anywhere without confirmation from the Lord first , we are in the last days and there are wolves in sheep’s clothing, I have to protect the anointing on my life. On that particular evening I felt led to go and I later on found out why I had to go. I was greeted by the ushers with a smile on their faces, led to a seat and then my friend noticed me and she came to get me to seat with her. I was given a warm welcome as a first time visitor and those around me greeted me. I received the visitor pack etc and I thought to myself , wow what a wonderful congregation this is. There was a young lady in her early 20’s who heard the beautiful worship from the choir from outside the church and she decided to come inside. This young lady walked straight to the altar in her short mini dress, knelt down and began to cry out loud. I saw the congregation's faces change right in front of me, the disapproving looks, the shaking of heads, the murmuring “this in not a night club, this is the house of the Lord” how dare she?” they were concerned about her dressing, her outward appearances and not her as a person. The ushers who had been so pleasant to me ran with prayer cloths and jackets to cover her up and people were frowning and telling her to cover up or leave the church. The atmosphere had changed and there was a coldness that made me shudder. As this commotion was going on the pastor’s wife an elderly lady I would say in her mid 50’s walked in with a smile on her face and walked to this altar , opened her arms to this lady , hugged her and started praying with her. She discerned that this young lady was in pain, broken and hurt and just needed love. The Pastor’s wife was full of the Spirit of God, and was guided on how to handle the situation. She didn’t look at the outward appearance , instead she tapped into the Spirit to know what was going on and how to help her. That is the love for others. This is the love of Christ that we as the body of Christ are meant to have for one another.
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We later on found out that this was the first time this girl had ever been in church. She testified that she had every intention of going to the nightclub ,drinking and then throwing herself off a building to kill herself, but it was the worship that drew her to the church. But I believe it was God’s divine plan for intervention for her life. It is really amazing how people proclaim that they are Christians ,they claim they love God , they love Jesus and they love the Holy Spirit and yet the way that they relate to other people does not portray that same love. The Word says in Galatians 2:20 “I have been crucified with Christ, and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So the life I now live in the body, I live because of the faithfulness of the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
The way the church shunned this young lady was really shocking. When we all received Christ as our Lord and Savior we went to Him as we were. With all our sins , for everyone on this earth does sin. Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, God didn’t say go and change then come to me when you are covered , or when you have dressed a certain type of way. Isaiah 1:18 “Come now, let’s settle this,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow. Though they are red like crimson, I will make them as white as wool.” Bear in mind God knows all our sins and still He loves us. Bear in mind that every day we SIN against Him and we go to the throne of mercy and ask for forgiveness and He still forgives us every day. Somehow for us it is so difficult to forgive and love our neighbours. Some people don’t talk to family members and yet they claim that they love others with the love of God. Many people claim to be Christians but still demonstrate zero attributes of Christ in them. We need to do better as the body of Christ .God wants us to love one another. We talk all the time about loving others; loving with words of encouragement, loving by acts of service, loving by giving money, giving gifts and loving by spending time. All of these loves are right and good, but they are incomplete if we do not share the greatest love the world has ever known, the gospel as well as live it. This is what the Scripture says in Matthew 25:35 ,25:40, Isaiah 58:10.
Love your family, love your neighbours, feed the homeless, donate your old clothes, give to charity, give to God’s kingdom, show kindness to others, be caring to others, Just love everybody. Loving others begins with a change in attitude and this can be done through the word of God so that it can soften your heart towards others. Romans 12:2 "Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—His good, pleasing and perfect will." Hebrews 4:12 states that "For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart." Be a good Samaritan like in Luke 10:30-37 and be good to others without looking for validation or reward .May You be encouraged to look into your own life, reflect, and show others love in Jesus’ name.
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John 15:12, 1 Corinthians 13:13 , 1 John 4:12
Jesus, You are the Author and Originator of love. We only know love because You are love and You loved us first. You love us specifically and sacrificially. You love us in our sin and rebellion against you. You love us despite the pain we inflict on others. You love us in our mess. It is that love - that selfless, self-sacrificing love, which we are asking that You anoint us with so we can show love to others. It is an overflow of Your love for us that allows us to love other people. Jesus, we ask You to make us better lovers of one another. Break every heart of stone in us and help us to see the good in people. Holy Spirit help us to be more like Jesus everyday and help us not to judge people and look at the outward experience. Lord break every chain that is stopping us from demonstrating the love of God to others, in Your Powerful name I pray. Amen.
Reflection (write down your thoughts)
What is the Holy Spirit are saying to you?(Be still and Listen. Write down what You hear in your spirit)
HAVE A BLESSED WEEK