What God’s love does

“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.”* 1 Corinthians chapter 13 is called the love chapter. What attracted me the most to God was His love. I fell in love with His love. His love drew me in. His love touched my heart and made me fall in love with the Savior. It is His love that gave me hope. It welcomed me into His world. It welcomed me into His arms. Before that, God had been a mundane being far away from me. I couldn’t dream to get close to Him or to get to know Him. I felt a major separation from Him and I didn’t understand who He was and why He was so stern and strict. The enemy likes to blur our understanding of God and give us a false picture that makes us feel unworthy and unwanted. Did God want to be close to me? He certainly did but my mind didn’t accept it and it alienated me from God. Love is what bridges the gap between God and us. Love is the way to the Father. Love is the answer and Jesus is love. When you see the love of the Father, you can’t help but notice Jesus. Jesus is everything and He is the love you and I and everyone in the world need. Love is the power that can do all things. Love creates miracles. Love sets us free. Love heals. Love blesses.1 Corinthians 13 also explains that without love we are nothing.

We can do a lot of things that are good and noble but if there is no love behind them, they are empty acts. We can’t operate efficiently without love. Love gives meaning to what we do and to who we are. We can be believers who live our lives without love, without Jesus but then we are not grounded in the truth. Jesus is the truth, the way and the life and He is love. His love is the truth that sets the captives free and as believers we ought to have love in our entire spiritual being. We could have amazing talents and gifts but without love they don’t mean much. Love is powerful because it represents salvation. We were saved because of love. Love is the flame that ignites our salvation. Love, true love from God is everything Jesus is about. When you read the whole chapter (1 Corinthians 13), you are quickly made aware of the fact that love is the most powerful force in the universe and it is the best thing you can long for and you can share. Jesus in us gives us love. He gives us that amazing power and it is up to us to engage with it and to give it life. We put it under a bushel way too often. We are more preoccupied with what appears to be principles and rules in the Bible. We use them as justification for separation and exclusion. Love unites and it brings people together. Jesus unites.

Jesus bridged the gap that had been placed between God and humanity. That is what love does. Love bridges gaps. It unites us with God and it builds bridges in our loves. It builds bridges between us and peace. It builds bridges between us and victory. It builds bridges between us and healing. Whatever blessing you need today, know that God’s love can build a bridge between you and your blessing. Jesus will unite you to your blessing. His love is everything. Embrace it. Let it be a part of your life. Let it be the biggest part of your life. Let it make you sound like Jesus and not like a resounding gong with no substance. Love is the substance of God’s power and it is what you need to express, to adhere to and to share every single day. Like I said, love creates miracles. Faith and love together make wonders. There is a wonder and a miracle in your future because God has your future in the palm of His hand and love is the motive behind everything He does. He is preparing blessings and good breaks for you. Love will always give you great things. Trust in God’s love for you and remind yourself that His love can change anything in your life. If you ever wonder what God’s love can do for you, think about the fact that there is nothing that His love can’t do. God’s love can do the impossible. Think miracles! Think love that prevails over the enemy. May God bless you and protect you and remember that God will always love you!

Suggested reading: Psalm 136:26; 1 Corinthians 13:1*; Ephesians 2:4-5

Take the time with be with God

Yesterday was a very busy day. Most days are but yesterday was exceptionally busy. I like to schedule time to be with the Lord one on one and on busy days it is more challenging. However, I have learned that it is the best thing I can do on a busy day. I do what I call “take the time to take the time.” I stop everything. I go up to my prayer loft and spend time with God. Yesterday I did it for about 10 minutes. It seemed like nothing but it turned out to be everything I needed. In those 10 minutes He reminded me that He is a calm God, He is not in a rush and He is always at peace. Isn’t it amazing? God, the One who created the world, the One who sees everything that is going on in the world is calm and collected all the time. He doesn’t lose patience. He doesn’t get angry. He doesn’t run around frantically wondering how He is going to fix the world. He is always at peace no matter what is happening. It doesn’t mean He doesn’t care.

 God cares and He knows how to fix the world, how to mend our lives and how to restore what’s lost. When we are rushing around and we don’t give God the time of day, we lose something important. We lose the precious connection. We waste time. You could think that you are doing the opposite. You could think that taking care of business without taking the time to listen to God and to talk to Him is a waste of time. Time spent away from Him can turn into wasted time. I am not saying we are always wasting time. No, we have things to do and we should do it all for God so He can be magnified through our lives. It is when we ignore Him and we don’t include Him that we are wasting time. Think about all the time we could have with God if we took a few minutes here and there. Today I am inviting you to take the time to be with God every day for some time.

Jesus spent time with the Father in isolation. I believe it is crucial for us to do the same thing. It can be any time of the day. It can look any way we see fit. As long as we do it, we are spending our time in a very productive way. Spending time with God is extremely beneficial to our spirits. It gives us a boost and it stimulates our hearts. It is impossible to spend time with God and not get something out of it. It is impossible to spend time with God and not receive an impartation of His love. Think about it next time you spend time with Him. Think about what you receive from that time. It could be a small token of appreciation on His part. It could be a revelation. It could be a wave of peace. It could be an avalanche of joy. It could be a stamp of His love on your heart. Spending time with God will change you. It will help you. It will increase you. It will grow you. It will bless you. You will gain much more than you think. The Lord adores you and wants to spend time with you. It is the least you and I can do. Find time for God every day. Work can pile up and be a mountain of stress but His love and His peace will give us the strength to climb that mountain and conquer it. God is your strength, friend. You need Him all the time. On quiet days and on hectic days!

When I spent 10 minutes with God on my busy day yesterday, I felt like spending more time with Him. He is so encouraging and loving that a few minutes with Him make you want to spend a whole day plugged into His presence. When I was in college I had the luxury of more time and the praise sessions I had were out of this world. Today I am making an effort to not only carve in some time but to also make my schedule around God. He is becoming more and more of a priority. I would rather skip an activity than skip my time with God. I have had to shut off the world and stay away from people to be able to have my one on one sessions with God. What works best for me is first thing in the morning. I wake up at 5 so I can have my Jesus time. Then during the day I feel prompted to isolate and pray. Before bed my last hour has to be about Jesus. Bible reading, praise and prayer are essential for me. Do what works for you and make your schedule work for you. Make your schedule work for God. Don’t make plans with the world before you make plans with the Lord. Let Him be your agenda for the day. Let Him be the best part of your day. His love is contagious. His joy is powerful and His peace is healing. Take the time to be with God every day. Do it at your own pace but do it. It will change your day, it will change you and it will make your life better. Spend time with Jesus!

Suggested reading: Colossians 3:15; 2 Thessalonians 3:16; 2 John 1:3

Being a carrier of God’s love in a hurting world

Despite all the violence and the gratuitous hatred in the world, there is hope. There is hope for love and for goodness to make strides. You and I can be at the forefront of this battle for love. We are the carriers of God’s love and we can make a difference in the world. It sounds idealistic and simple but it can happen. Friend, you have a lot of love in you whether you express it or not. The love of Christ resides in your spirit and you can display it, broadcast it, share it and distribute it. You are a carrier of the most precious treasure in the universe. You can touch lives in a powerful way. You can introduce the Lord to people who have been used to hate and rejection. Jesus is all-inclusive. He loves every single person that is on the earth. The enemy is all-exclusive and he hates every single person that is on this earth. He also wants people to be far from God and to never experience His love. You can bridge the gap between God and so many people but being a carrier of His love. Be an active carrier that goes around and hands out God’s love like it is the most exciting news today. It surely is. This world needs so much love and so much healing and the healing starts with people who are willing to be spokespeople for God and who are willing to carry the torch of His love as long as they can.

I believe it is important to be receptive to God’s love so we can share it with others. It is also important to nurture that love and to keep it in our hearts. I want to know God’s love and understand it the best way I can. I know that I will never be able to comprehend it all. One thing for sure is that God so loved the Lord that He gave His only Son for me, for you and for everybody. It is that incredible love that I try to carry and to offer to people. Not in a preachy and religious way but in a more organic and accessible manner. The Holy Spirit knows everything and He knows how love works and how people operate. He can tell us and show us how to reach people. He can reveal the best way to help people and to comfort them and love them. There isn’t one mold that works from everyone. I think sometimes we try to push love on people without considering who they are and it turns them away. Sometimes people don’t need to hear words but they want to listen to our actions and get connected to the love within us. It is that love that bridges the gaps and that brings hope. People can see the light in the heart of the one who lets God use them.

The world is hurting. There is no doubt about it. I mentioned healing earlier and I am convinced that love heals. It is God’s love for humanity that healed a dead situation. We were destined for eternal doom. Our hope was broken. Our future was broken and Jesus mended everything on the cross. His love heals and it will continue to heal. As a carrier of His love, you can bring healing into the darkest places. You can ease the pain and give hope again. All you have to do is be the conduit of love you were meant to be. Speak love. Stand up for love. Don’t hesitate to give love. Be very generous with love. Show extravagant love. Know that your words can heal and they can change someone’s perspective of themselves. Promote God’s love for everyone. So many people have been wounded by the dagger of rejection and they need the power of love to remove all the pain and the suffering. Carry the love. It might be the only love some people will ever know!

Suggested reading: Isaiah 54:10; Romans 8:37-39;  1 John 4:7-8

Hope beyond the clouds

What will tomorrow bring? I often asked myself that question. Back then I thought that since today was bad, tomorrow would be even worse. I expected the worst. I didn’t know any better. The future looked bleak and hope was nowhere to be found. I waited for bad things to happen because it seemed like a natural flow. I was in a negative flow all the time and there was no chance I could jump off that flow and land on a better ground. The ground beneath my feet was always shaky. There was no stability. I had no firm place to stand. I was in sinky sand a lot and I got used to it. It is sad when you have a lot of problems and it is even sadder when you are used to them and they are all you know. Then I found the light. Then there was a glimmer of hope in the dark room I had been living. It was as if someone had finally opened the door to let in some change and to allow me to see that my future could be brighter than my past. I had never known that it was possible but that tiny glimmer of hope is all I needed to understand that behind dark clouds there is a sun that never stops shining. The Lord entered my life. I was introduced to Him and I was made aware that He had been behind those clouds the whole time. Nowadays when I find myself in a tough spot and things start to get dark again, I remember that God is still there and that above the clouds there is hope. Hope beyond the cloud is a daily reminder that I cherish. Today I want to remind you that there is hope beyond the clouds. There is a sun, the Lord, that is always bright and always full of life and hope. Look beyond the clouds. Look for hope. It is never gone!

The last time I was in a cloudy season, I almost fell into the trap of thinking that things would not get better. I was made to believe that my spring and my summer would never come. The Lord did not let me go down that road and He took me down memory lane where all things had always worked out. He showed me how He had been faithful through the years and encouraged me to stay in faith because nothing and no one could change how much He loved me. He pointed out that the season might be tough but I would come out of it stronger. I would learn to weather some of the worst storms. He was right, of course. Once I made up my mind that I was not going to let the weather dictate my mood and my disposition, things got better. I decided to let the Lord be the barometer and the thermometer for my emotions and my reactions. He is good all the time and something good will always come out of the circumstances we are in when we trust Him.

 I looked beyond the clouds. I focused on Jesus and not on the storm. I walked on water by holding His hand. I held on to hope. I declared hope. I stayed in the refuge of His hands. I looked at the clouds and commanded them to move. You see, at times you have to show the authority you have in the name of Jesus and make bold declarations. Boldness came out of me and I stood my ground. The clouds didn’t budge and neither did my faith. I was determined to stay in faith. What did I have to lose? It is when we are fervent and we don’t give up, that the negativity loses its grip. The Bible says “Resist the devil and he will flee.” I resisted and resisted and refused to be pessimistic about the situation and he packed his bags and moved. Don’t let him occupy your mind and take up space that doesn’t belong to him. Kick him to the curb and evict him. He lives in those dark clouds and tries to make you believe that you live there as well.

When you go through a difficult season, you often end up developing a sense of belonging. You think that problems and trials are part of your home. You sleep in the bedroom of fear and you eat in the dining room of worry. Your entire home is filled with sadness and hopelessness. However, that negativity is not your habitation. You belong with the Lord and where He is is where you should be. Go past the clouds. Get to the Heavens so to speak. Pray your way through the cloudiness. Reach out to God and He will draw closer to you. When you pray, tell Him that you know there is hope beyond the clouds and you won’t let the clouds intimidate you. Hope will come back. Hope will be right there with you again. Those clouds, those problems, are temporary. With the Lord you are going to soar and go beyond the dark clouds. Your future is bright. Your cloudy day today doesn’t mean that there is no sun for you tomorrow. God will make you smile again. Don’t worry. Great things are coming your way. The Lord is preparing amazing moments that will make you forget today’s gloominess and sorrow. There is hope beyond the clouds and its name is Jesus!

Suggested reading: Jeremiah 29:11; 1 Thessalonians 1:3; Colossians 1:27