Vignettes of Love, Part 4 of 4—YOU Are Love, Post #17

Thank you for peaking with me this month into the lives of three loving, Godly couples and families. Today’s last “love vignette” glimpse is all about you.

You are loved and are made to love. No matter if you are married or single, you are loved because “God is love.” (1 John 4:16b NIV 1984). Jesus and His Love are really the cornerstone of Christianity.

Some people think Christians are conservative rule followers. It’s not like that at all. Love is the divine glue that binds us together, giving us the freedom and deep desire to be more, to serve and love others, to do our best.

You know what Jesus said were the two most important laws to follow?

“Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.“            (Matthew 22: 37-40 NIV 1984).

Isn’t it wonderful and such a relief to know that the two most important “rules” Jesus wants us to follow are to love Him wholeheartedly and love others. By the way, our “neighbor” is everyone.

My pastor told a story recently to illustrate the point. A Christian pastor was on an airplane trip and happened to sit beside a Muslim leader. The Muslim leader began talking with the pastor and a discussion began on the different points of their perspective faiths. People around them started listening and even stood up to watch them and hear them more clearly.

The debate became so heated, the Christian pastor paused, took a deep breath and looked the Muslim leader directly in the eye. He said, “I will convert to Islam if you can tell me you love me more than I love you right now.” The Muslim leader was silent.  They shook hands. Debate over.

Many of you may be familiar with the well-known “Love Chapter” in 1 Corinthians 13, often read at weddings. Let’s look at this passage carefully, differently and challenge ourselves.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.” (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a NIV 1984).

Now for the challenge. In this passage, replace your own name with the word “Love” and read it aloud. Whew. It’s a tall order. I sure do fall short of living this.

For Valentine’s Day this year I gave my precious Mom a card. Inside I  wrote her name in this passage. For those who know my beloved Mom Maxine Jordan, she is June Cleaver and Jesus all wrapped up in one beautiful package. She lives this. She is love.

“Maxine is patient, Maxine is kind. She does not envy, she does not boast, she is not proud. Maxine is not rude, she is not self-seeking, she is not easily angered, she keeps no record of wrongs. Maxine does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. Maxine always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Maxine never fails.”

Dear one, you are loved and you are love.  Let’s live it out loud. Let’s live love.

 Reflect:

–How will you love more with your heart, starting today?

–Do you love the Lord? If so, do you love Him with your head or your heart?  Are you ready to love Him more deeply?

Renew:

–“May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord, even as we put our hope in You.” (Psalm 33:22 NIV 1984).

–“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God…And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him. In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like Him… We love because He first loved us.” (1 John 4: 7, 16, 17, 19 NIV 1984).

Recharge:

–Which people or strangers will you demonstrate love to this week?

–Open you Bible and read some daily from it. Feel the Love pouring forth on you.

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