Monday, October 26, 2009

God loves you more than your Mama...

I started writing this back in March, but wanted to share it... and add a bit to it:

God loves you more than your Mama.

For most people, if asked who loves them most in the world – the answer might be any of the following: mom, dad, spouse, partner, sibling, B/F/F, etc… and in general at some point we have taken that person for granted in some way, shape, or form during the length of your relationship. Think of the “sacrifices” those people may have made for you and think about whether or not you recognized this. If you have not – thank them. Tell them you love them, tell them you appreciate them… because eventually, it may be too late.

To see the ultimate example of love, one should look to God. He sent His Son to be the living, breathing, example of love and the ultimate sacrifice for His loved ones (YOU!!!). God is the only friend you can ever have that you can dump all your troubles, issues, and cares upon and He will never stop caring or listening. Eventually we humans would fall asleep or leave – but Him… not so much.

“Out of the depths I have cried to You, O Lord;
Lord, heard my voice!
Let your ears be attentive
To the voice of my supplications.”
Psalm 130: 1-2

In order to truly love people I must know the love of God for He is the best example of love ever shown. In order to be a better friend, I must follow His example and live it daily. There is no doubt in my mind that I will fail miserably at loving others some days – but that is one of the joys of a relationship with God – He forgives and gives opportunities to improve and loves without boundaries.

One of the most astonishing things to me is that God wants me. He doesn’t need me, but He wants me!

“God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. Nor is He worshipped with men’s hands, as though He needed anything, since He gives to all liked, breath, and all things.”
Acts 17: 24 – 25

As I was thinking about God’s love and his example of love and friendship, the following verses come to mind:
"Satisfy us each morning with your unfailing love, so we may sing for joy to the end of our lives." (Psalm 90:14)

" If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
Prophecy and speaking in unknown languages and special knowledge will become useless. But love will last forever!" (1 Corinthians 13: 1-8)

"For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope." (Jeremiah 29:11)
"Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean he no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death?" (Romans 8:35)
"This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you slaves, because a master doesn’t confide in his slaves. Now you are my friends, since I have told you everything the Father told me. You didn’t choose me. I chose you. I appointed you to go and produce lasting fruit, so that the Father will give you whatever you ask for, using my name. This is my command: Love each other."
(John 15: 12 - 17)

"The Lord says, “Then I will heal you of your faithlessness; my love will know no bounds, for my anger will be gone forever" (Hosea 14: 4)
I think it's funny that I came across this writing of mine tonight. Lately I have really been thinking of writing about a special group of people God has put in my life. And the subject of friendship and love really brings it into perspective. A little over a year ago I was assigned to a small group within my Sunday School class. There are 6 other girls in this group who have truly made my life better within the last year. They have been with me and supported me through the hardest times of my life, and I am so thankful for that. (Once again, God's timing is awesome... this group literally started a few weeks before Pawpaw died... built in support as soon as He knew I would need it!) Another great part about this group is the accountability involved. We laugh together alot... but we have also cried together on many occasions. Even when we are laughing and joking, someone will bring up quiet times and we will all speak up to say where we are... even if it isn't a good place. There is so much honesty and vulnerability within this small group of friends that I feel totally comfortable and encouraged by these girls and I look forward to seeing them as ever week. (FC, if you are reading this... each of you are truly a blessing in my life and I thank God for you every day. I don't know that I can ever express to you what you have meant to me as we have grown to love and care for each other. You are my family in Birmingham and I love you all so much.)
Dear God,
Thank you for the earthly portrayal of Your love that is friends and family. I don't deserve it, but am desperate for it. I pray that I won't take for granted the people You have placed in my life that make me a better person, and that You will use me to encourage and support them in the days to come.
- KC

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