K-LOVE Features September 2016
Everybody Loves Something
Everyone loves something! We can’t help ourselves. That’s how we’re wired. Hermits love solitude. Misers love money. Addicts love their addictions. Pundits love opinions. And we can see that what we love speaks directly to who we are. Because “God is love” what we love also determines whether or not we love God. (1 John 4:8b, NKJV) Do we love what God loves: people? Do we love how God loves: unconditionally? Why does God emphasize love? Because “three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.” (1 Corinthians 13:13, NLT) Love is the greatest because it shows us who God is, not what He does, or how He does it. When you begin to grasp this amazing reality, and bask in the love of your Creator, you will begin to live for the very reason He created you.
What Breaks God’s Heart
Want to know what breaks God’s heart? Relational breaches break the heart of God, while loving relationships unveil the fabric of Heaven. The root of these relational breakdowns is spiritual warfare. Their faces are human, but their roots are supernatural. Why are our relationships so important? Because if only one characteristic of God permeated all that He says and does, it would be love. God not only radiates love, He IS love. (1 John 4:8) It is His essence! And within the Godhead of Father, Son and Holy Spirit, there is harmony based on love. Never lose sight of this most important dimension of God’s heart: that Jesus lives to restore all who are lost, longs to heal all who are hurt, and died and rose to liberate all who are bound.
God’s Nature Is an “Us”
The very nature of the Godhead is an US—not a ME. “Then God said, ‘Let US make man in OUR image, after OUR likeness.’” (Genesis 1:26) God not only incorporates intimate fellowship within the Godhead based on love, but with everyone He created to be relationally connected to Him. The depth of this harmony within the Godhead can perhaps best be seen when it was broken. The cry of Jesus on the cross of Calvary, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” reminds us of the profound love between Jesus and His Heavenly Father. (Matthew 27:45–46, Psalm 22:1) At that heart-wrenching moment His eternal fellowship with His Father was broken. This was perhaps God’s greatest pain of all—a broken relationship. As it is for God, so it should be for us.
Writing People Off
The elephant in any room are its broken relationships. They simmer beneath the surface, breaking both the heart of God and—on some level—each of us. How different the planet would be if, as Christ’s followers, we would try to repair every broken relationship. People have written us off. It hurts! But whom have I written off as well? The day my father died, I was glad he was gone. Though I forgave him a thousand times in my heart, it took over 40 years to completely release the hurt he caused me. But it finally came! Now, he’s the number one person I hope to see again in Heaven. May God make it so! What relationship is broken in your life that God wants to heal? I think you know.
One of the most dangerous results of believing a lie, is that when the truth shows up we don’t recognize it. Jesus is the way the truth and the life, but when He showed up on Earth, most people didn’t recognize the Truth when they saw it. In this age, there has never been a greater proliferation of lies and a wider inability to recognize the truth. Unless our understanding of truth is based upon the unchanging Word of God, we will eventually be deceived and believe a lie. And that distortion of reality will get us so far off track, we may remain lost…forever. “Jesus, only You are the Truth that will set us free. We cling to You more than any one we have ever known.”
No Creator Equals No Future
If there is no Creator, then we have no destiny, no future, just wishful thinking. Everything is mere mythology, based on fiction and not fact. If we evolved as a cosmic coincidence from blobs or slime or frogs, then we have no ultimate purpose and no eternal value. None of us have a future of any consequence outside of God, man’s ego does not give him a future. “God’s will alone” gives us a future. Only because there is a loving God who created us with purpose, do we each have a destiny and something to look forward to. Thank God we each have a magnificent script written before the foundation of the world. Ask God every day to show you His plan for your life, because He will!
I Believe God!
When Paul the Apostle was caught in a life-threatening hurricane, he said, “I believe God!” Not “I believe IN God!” (Acts 27:25, NKJV) Many people believe in God. The Bible says in James 2:19, even the “demons believe in God,” but they refused to surrender their lives to His will. At many points in life, belief or unbelief will be our only choices. At those crucial moments, never forget what God has already told you. He has, I believe, spoken to each one of us, not audibly, but in some tangible way. And if we are going to lead ourselves and others into His will, we need the unshakeable confidence in God’s written Word alone, and not our own will or words. “Jesus, speak again today to each of us. Remind us of who You are, and therefore who we are as well.”
Fighting Battles We Don’t Want to Fight
All of us are called to face enemies and fight battles we don’t want to fight. It was one of the primary mistakes the Children of Israel made when God called them to conquer their promised land. The Bible says in Judges 1:28, “…when Israel grew strong, they…did not drive…out (their enemies) completely.” They didn’t do what God told them to do: drive the enemy out of their inheritance… their future. It even mentions these tribes of Israel by name: Ephraim didn’t drive them out, Zebulan didn’t…Asher didn’t…Naphtali didn’t. Over and over again, they put off absolutely essential, crucial battles. They didn’t realize a fact of life: the enemy you refuse to fight today you’ll have to fight tomorrow. What enemy of your soul are you unwilling to face and fight?
Of Identities, Destinies and Legacies
Do you feel your life has been shortchanged? That the hand you were dealt was unfair. It may surprise you that from God’s perspective we’ve all been given much. Beyond the struggles and setbacks, there’s a revelation of God’s plan and purpose for each of us awaiting to be discovered. The seed of your future fulfillment may seem infinitely small, but when watered by faith and obedience to the promises of God, a mighty harvest of blessing and favor awaits you. The Bible says that His “…divine power has bestowed on us [absolutely] everything necessary for [a dynamic spiritual] life…” (2 Peter 1:3, AMP) Our identity is what God has given us. Our destiny is what He’s marvelously planned for us, and our legacy is what we leave behind. Find your true identity and destiny in Christ!
Life is all about transitions. Each of us made the transition from eating with our hands as babies, to tackling a spoon as toddlers. That worked on some foods, but in time we needed to expand our utensils and so we picked up a fork. This also proved helpful until it was necessary to cut something, and then came the giant leap…to the knife. Step by step, from one transition to another, we made our move. A pattern that will repeat itself our whole lives, and is essential in order for us to become who God intended us to be. The Bible says, “Don’t despise the day
of small things.” (Zechariah 4:10) So, let me ask you, what transition are you in, and what is God trying to show you? For it is in our transitions that we meet God.
Couples Home Explodes
The same day a couple was returning from visiting their grandchildren, they found that their beautiful home had exploded and was completely destroyed. They had lost everything! It was shocking! How would they respond…with bitterness? … despair? …hopelessness? Much to the surprise of concerned family members they text, “We are so grateful to be alive. The Fire Chief said if we had been home, we surely would have perished in the explosion and fire. God is good! We feel spared. He has other things planned for us. We are so thankful. I’m looking at this as one big opportunity. We will be making the right decisions going forward! We went back and forth on which day we should return. Is there such a thing as sovereignty? I think so!” (Psalm 139:1-10)
Of Lies and Responses
Life is all about our responses. We will each, at times, feel cheated, lied to, and taken advantage of. At these pivotal moments that test us to our core, we can overreact or properly respond, retaliate or evaluate. Much of the evil that has been unleashed upon the world has been fueled by partial truths, over reactions, and bitter responses. More often than not, these half-truths are complete lies that become the ammunition for revenge, which God says is in His court alone. The Bible says, “…if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another.…” (Galatians 5:15, ESV) “Jesus, keep us from believing lies and responding poorly to the challenges of life! May we be those who heal and not hurt.”