The Love That Matters Most

Posted by on January 11, 2013

“Through the cross we learn that the heavenly Father loves us with a love that is infinite. Can we wonder that Paul exclaimed, “God forbid that I should glory, save in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ”? Galatians 6:14. It is our privilege also to glory in the cross, our privilege to give ourselves wholly to Him who gave Himself for us. Then, with the light that streams from Calvary shining in our faces, we may go forth to reveal this light to those in darkness. ” Acts of The Apostles pg 210.1

Four years ago I gave my heart to Jesus.  I’m sure there are people in the world today who would say.. “Why would you do that?”  What happened?  Why did it take so long?  What brought me to the realization that I need Jesus?  What was wrong with “love” the way I saw it before Jesus?

Since childhood and the rejection of my natural mother at birth,  I had looked for something or someone to fulfill all that had been missing.  The warmth, affirmation and complete acceptance.  I wanted approval for just the way I am. I had become stubborn in my ways as part of a defense mechanism and self protective shell. It was all about me.

When I think about Jesus today, I am amazed at how He allows us to experience a great deal of things in life that we don’t “need” to experience.  He allows them so that we can learn what we would not have otherwise come to realize and understand.

Jesus let me surround myself with all kinds of distractions and friends that would seem to cater to my every desire. Yet still… I longed for something else. Something that doesn’t come through the world or people in it.  Only He loves with a love that is pure. His love changes lives and fills them with His righteousness. Through our decisions to die to self, He begins to occupy more and more of us which brings glory and honor to Him.  I didn’t understand this when I was younger.  I was missing out on a relationship that He desired from me and that He desires from every living soul.

One by one my friends began to die.  My distractions in this world were being overcome by the stain of sin that has destroyed all that is beautiful.   Eventually …. He was right before me.  I was face to face with Jesus and He was asking me if I would now afford the time and devotion of getting to know Him intimately.  Was I just going to drift through the rest of my life that He had so lovingly preserved, or was I going to ignore Him and continually focus on anything that would bring me temporary joy?

It was like a big thud!  It was like a lightening bolt!  I had always been blaming and pleading before God.  All along He had tried to show me that I needed to make a decision for Him. He is not a God that forces.  There I was … faced with a question directly from God.  “Do you want to know me?”  I was deeply ashamed that I had ignored God and lived in a way that was in complete opposition to His plan for me.  I wasn’t doing anything that pleases God. I was self absorbed. I was living life according to Lucifer’s plan.  I had a better way. My opinion was more important. God didn’t understand.  I, I, I … You see that is really where the center of life’s problems begin.

So right there before me was God with the question… “Do you want to know me?”   I was overwhelmed with self disappointment.  My ways had not given me anything that had eternal value.  I was living for life in the moment, not for what Jesus offers all who will listen to that still small voice that’s crying out in the midst of the loud proclamations of this world.

And so a process of relinquishing self began. I began to make decisions to turn myself over to Jesus. All of me.  He was pleading with me for intimacy that I had never known. It only comes by way of spending time with Him. Reading His letter to me… and talking to Him.  We don’t get to know anyone without communication.  And communication with Him has great reward.

Oh … It’s puzzling at times. I don’t have it all figured out. Many times I have to keep studying, praying and spending time with God to determine truth and what He is trying to teach me.  But God has promised me that if I am dedicated to Him, He will reveal Himself to me. He has asked me to love Him with “ALL” my heart, not just part of it.

That’s quite a consideration.  “ALL my heart.”  God only allows trials to come to us that He knows we will be able to endure with His supplied strength.  God has taught me so much!  He has been so gracious and loving to me.  He has blessed me beyond my wildest imagination.

Yet walking with Him is certainly not like walking on the streets of gold that are promised in Heaven.  The road here can get a bit steep, rough and narrow.  It is the narrow way that leads through the gates of heaven.  God has begun to allow some of the temptations of my past to revisit me.   I began thinking… “I’ve dealt with that already.. haven’t I?”  We are tested. How much have we grown?  Are we really planted firmly in Jesus?  Can we easily be drawn away from Him under varying circumstances or will we stand for and with Him … unshaken?

I recently found myself focusing on the acceptance I used to want from society.  No judgment or criticism. Oh it felt great!  You begin to feel pretty good about yourself and the affirmations and joy that are not all wrong by any means; it’s just that the focus slowly begins to tilt toward self instead of being completely focused on Jesus.   And in that … the enemy believes that he is regaining ground that was taken from Him when I made a decision to live for Jesus.

The ministry God has given me has always been about HIM.. not me. He takes care of me. But I am a vessel used to convey His love and truth for all His children.  If my focus in continually on Him… I will lack nothing because He is my provider. He will not leave or forsake me.   He tells me to rely on Him.  1 Peter 5:7 “Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.”

In Him … I don’t have to ask if He still loves me.  I am safe while abiding in Him. Anything or anyone else has no guarantee. This is why He asks for us to trust in Him who we cannot see, but who will never let us down.  In Him…. all things are possible. Philippians 4:13.  

We must be so careful not to be led by our feelings. They can easily be manipulated by the enemy. They can be traps set to take our focus off of our Savior.  

My focus must stay on the cross… and looking heavenward toward Jesus.  Troubled times are forecast for those who will stand firmly in their faith. But our powerful, loving God has promised to see us through any trial or temptation and reward us with life that will go on forever without further pain, suffering, doubt, discouragement or failure.

So today and every day… I vow to renew my faith and my trust in Him. It is a privilege and honor to be about my Father’s business. It’s such  a good business!

God’s rich and powerful blessings to each of you!

Filed Under: Uncategorized