Sunday, May 29, 2011

The Topic We Know Too Well and Not Enough

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The woman in the pew in front of me had a distracting habit of rocking back and forth as though she were soothing a baby to sleep. I had to work to turn my attention from my annoyance at her rocking and focus my attention above and beyond her to the guest speaker. He had an engaging style, and had thoughtfully provided fill-in-the-blank notes for his sermon, which was a welcome way to pay attention to him and not the rocking woman I couldn't NOT see.

His topic this morning was utterly familiar, much-studied, well-known . . . and woefully under-practiced, both inside and outside of the church. He spoke about LOVE.

The visiting seminary professor brought a message that was both convicting AND uplifting (evidence of his giftedness), and he highlighted many points of truth about love and our responsibility that are absolutely crucial to our lives in Christ. While I will continue to chew on the meaty goodness of this message, there was one idea he shared that really sparked my imagination about a very familiar verse:

 "And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love."

Have you ever wondered why love is the greatest? I have to admit, I think I always just accepted that love is the greatest without contemplating the why of it. Citing the teaching of D. A. Carson, the professor said that love is the greatest because love is the only one of the three that God is and does. He inspires faith, He gives hope, but He IS love.


God is love, and knowing Him is my highest calling.  If I am living out that calling, I MUST be transformed into a channel of that awesome, overwhelming, and matchless love. The degree to which I love is in direct proportion to how well I know God. If I claim to know Him, I had better not be restricting the flow of His love by anything of myself.  Knowing God is knowing love, and when I really know Him, I cannot stay the way I was.

The days we walk on this troubled blue marble are fraught with distractions and annoyances large and small that can take our eyes off what is really important. We can so easily become fixated on the things of earth that we lose our focus on the only thing that matters--the eternal glory of knowing God and being transformed by His love. When we are so transformed, our lives will become conduits of His love to others in real, tangible, practical, boots-on-the-ground ways that change lives. I pray that we will look above and beyond ourselves and the things that distract us (like rocking church ladies), to pay full attention to the One whose very essence is love.

Heavenly Father, please, never let us allow love to become the truth we know so well we know it not at all! Help us to be ever increasing in our knowing of YOU and ever more filled with the rushing river of Your transforming love!

What is the difference between knowledge of God and knowing God?
How does that difference affect your ability to love?
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Joining Ann Voskamp in counting His graces for her Multitudes on Monday
I hope you'll join in if you haven't already!
In the counting of the endless gifts I say with C. S. Lewis,
"This also is Thou!"

#521-535
521. The opportunity to be a sounding board and a cheerleader (AKA Mom!)
522. To do items checked off and new ones underway
523. Mommy and Daddy taking turns on the phone with me!
524. The amazing present they are offering me!!
525. Spicy sausages
526. The climbing number of sunbeam climbers--what a blessing to be in such good company!
527. Frosty cold iced Peet's Decaf Major Dickason's coffee
528. Drummer Boy toughing it out when he was sick--projects, finals and final recording session
529. She So Sweet singing sweetly at her school's coffee house
530. Drummer Boy's comedy routine in the waiting room at the doctor's office--how we LAUGHED!
531. Negative strep tests, and Drummer Boy starting to feel better
532. Hero Husband who works so hard for his family and NEVER gives up!
533. Two new card designs, my first t-shirt design and the desire to design more for Friday Dreaming!
534. The fun of coming together to watch Nanny McPhee Returns, and really enjoying a sweet story.
535. Reminder of the most important sentence in the Bible: "God is love."  1 John 4:8 NIV

Joining L.L. Barkat for:
On In Around button

Joining Michelle DeRusha for:


Joining Jen's Sisterhood:


A heartfelt thank you to these generous bloggers
who make these communities available!

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