The Boundaries of Love

1375169_515215345236431_1840146887_nWhen we think of the word “love” our minds reflect on several aspects of love in our own lives. We have a love for our spouse, which is a strong heartfelt bond that’s greater than any other human relationship, and we have a love for our children that is equal in commitment and totally unconditional. Some of us have a strong love for our parents and our relatives that’s unbreakable, and even for a few select friends that’s unique. We live each day because we have people to love and because we are loved.

We know that love is the greatest virtue of God and we know that He has done everything for us since the beginning of time because of the love that He has for us, His children. We know that His love is so great that He even gave His own life on the cross for us so that we would no longer have sin in us and  we could be redeemed back to Him.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” … John 3:16

“Greater love hath n man than this, that a man lay down His life for his friends.” … John 15:13

As Christians, we share this love with people outside the family, as well, and we want to love our Christian brothers and sisters the same as God loves them because we know that God is love and so we should also abound in love.

“Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.” … 1 John 4:7

Yet, there is so much more to love than just sharing it with those who are close to our heart. We need to show God’s love and passion toward everyone we meet and to those who we’ll never meet.

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Orphans at Passion of Christ Ministries Pakistan

There are so many missionary ministries all over the world that can use our prayers and our financial support, and if all of us would just give a little to God’s starving children they could be fed and clothed, educated and protected. We need to be wise, though, because there are many false ministries that just want our money and can deceive us. We need to pray for God’s direction and then support the ministries that come across our path so we can be an extension of God’s arm and show His love through our love, our prayers and our gifts.

We need to look at people the way God sees them, and not the way we are programmed in this world to see them. There are many people who come against us and hurt us, and this world tells us that these “enemies” are bad and deserve to be punished. They have earned their bad name and should suffer for the pain they have cause others. Yet, this is not what Jesus told us to do. He told us to love our enemies – not by being their friend and approving their actions – but by seeing them through God’s eyes as people who are lost and who don’t know Jesus and who NEED Him desperately.

We need to pray for their salvation because we may be the only person in the entire world who is able to see them as lost. We need to hate the sin, but love the sinner. Wouldn’t it be great to get into Heaven and know that people are there because we prayed for them? Because we saw them as God sees them and not how the world sees them?

“Ye have heard that it hath been said, ‘Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy’.  But I say unto you, ‘Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which spitefully use you, and persecute you.’” … Matthew 5:43-44

We must never raise ourselves up to feel better than the unsaved person and we must always remember that we were once unsaved, too. We weren’t born saved; it was a commitment that we made when we realized that WE needed Jesus. And so we need to extend this opportunity of grace toward others because no one deserves an unhappy life without God.

 “Freely ye have received, freely give.” … Matthew 10:8

We need to always be in prayer and ask God to help us be more like Him. When we see the beggar on the street, instead of walking away in disgust, we need to see that person as someone crying out for help. They may stink of alcohol or drugs or repulsive body odor, but ignore all that and look deep and you’ll see that they are crying out for help, not just a handout. Give them a coin, a handshake, a smile. Give them even more than that; tell them that Jesus loves them and then give them a little page with the address of a Christian help centre where they can go to reboot their lives.

Insight for LivingLove is all around us when we see things through the eyes of God. The little birds that chirp bring peace and joy to our busy world as we realize that they are His colorful and glorious creations made for us to enjoy. The flowers and the trees and the gardens, whether they’re ours or a neighbor’s, all reveal God’s amazing ability to continue to create beauty in a world that is dying.

We live in a very busy and demanding world that’s ruled by ungodly people, and many of us have no choice but to be part of it as our jobs keep us tied into it. But even so, we can all take a few minutes every day to deliberately see God’s love around us and praise Him for keeping His love alive through His creations. And we can purpose in our own hearts that we will help others to see the love of God so they, too, can have this joy. The beautiful thing about prayer is that it takes us into God’s presence where we can fill up on His love and then share it with others in this hurting world.

“A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another as I have loved you; that ye also love one another.” … John 13:34

*If you are looking for a ministry to reach out to with your monthly financial support, please consider The Passion of Christ Ministries Pakistan. In this challenging area of Pakistan, a Christian family has taken in more than 30 orphans left to die after various destructions, and they have become an official orphanage but without any government support. They depend on God to bring them clothes, food, books and the basics of life, and they are raising up children who love God. Your monthly commitment of only $15 a month would be a tremendous blessing to them. Check out their website and be part of God’s extended arm.

Take Everything to God in Prayer

Life can get so busy and so challenging at times that we often find ourselves fighting the trials that come against us with our own strength. We forget that God has provided an answer for us in a way that will not only give us the victory, but that will be a blessing to everyone involved. When we get burdened down, our greatest handicap is that we forget to “take everything to God in prayer”.

This cherished gospel hymn, “What a Friend We Have in Jesus”, was originally written as a poem in 1855 by Joseph Scriven, who was born in Dublin, Ireland in 1820. He became a graduate of the Trinity College in Dublin at the age of 25, and then immigrated to Canada where he lived his life until he died at Port Hope, Ontario in 1886. He wrote this song for his mother back in Dublin to comfort her during a time of sorrow in her life, and these great words of passion became an encouragement to her.

It was originally published as an anonymous poem after that, but then in the 1880’s it became the words to the music that Charles Crozat Converse composed in 1868. It quickly rose to be a popular hymn in churches all around, and is now sung by Christians all over the world.

Why is this song so popular? It’s not just because it’s an old song that mature Christians don’t want to see pass away. It’s because the words and the music are inspired by God Himself, and everyone who sings it finds the presence of God in it.

When we’re going through bad times in our lives, sometimes we don’t hear what people are saying to us and we fall deeper into our trials as we struggle alone and face depression and frustration. But God knows how these pressures can affect us and He knows that music is one way that He can get to us. That’s why He blessed this hymn so that it will touch our hearts when nothing else can. This beautiful song will release us from the world and draw us unto Him when we submit ourselves to Him through it.

And once we are free from the clutches of our problems and lost in the ambience of His presence, we will realize that God is waiting to help us. He will step in and make a way where there is no way when we remember to talk to Him and ask Him for help. He is able to give us the victory over the things that come against us if we will just remember to “take everything to God in prayer”. Praise God!

  1. What a friend we have in Jesus,
    All our sins and griefs to bear!
    What a privilege to carry
    Everything to God in prayer!
    Oh, what peace we often forfeit,
    Oh, what needless pain we bear,
    All because we do not carry
    Everything to God in prayer!
  2. Have we trials and temptations?
    Is there trouble anywhere?
    We should never be discouraged—
    Take it to the Lord in prayer.
    Can we find a friend so faithful,
    Who will all our sorrows share?
    Jesus knows our every weakness;
    Take it to the Lord in prayer.
  3. Are we weak and heavy-laden,
    Cumbered with a load of care?
    Precious Savior, still our refuge—
    Take it to the Lord in prayer.
    Do thy friends despise, forsake thee?
    Take it to the Lord in prayer!
    In His arms He’ll take and shield thee,
    Thou wilt find a solace there.
  4. Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised
    Thou wilt all our burdens bear;
    May we ever, Lord, be bringing
    All to Thee in earnest prayer.
    Soon in glory bright, unclouded,
    There will be no need for prayer—
    Rapture, praise, and endless worship
    Will be our sweet portion there.

Listen to the song at this link and be blessed. What a Friend we Have in Jesus

“Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:29-30

Do You Need a Friend?

There’s one person who we can ALWAYS count on to be there for us and that’s Jesus.  This isn’t a new message but it needs to be repeated to get it down into our spirit, into our minds and into our hearts so that we know that we know that Jesus is here for us.

Sometimes things come against us and we need someone to talk to, someone who will actually hear us and not condemn us. None of us are as perfect as we wish we could be. We all do things at some point that we wish we could simply erase from the memories of our minds and pretend they never happened.

We can’t talk to our families about them because we feel that we’ll have let them down. We can’t talk to our friends about them because we feel foolish and embarrassed. We can’t go to counseling because we either don’t have the money or feel that we’ll be permanently labelled. The burden gets heavier and heavier and our lives become troubled.

But that does NOT need to happen because the Bible says that we have a friend that sticks closer than a brother. That friend is Jesus. He’s there for us ALWAYS. He’s as close as the mention of His name. He’ll listen and not be offended, he’ll have compassion and not label you. He’ll work WITH you through the problem and give you confidence, courage and hope.

Don’t ever think that you have to do anything in this world alone – call out the name of Jesus and He’ll come.

There is a friend that sticks closer than a brother.”…Proverbs 18:24

You are not alone

We’ve all been there and many of us are still going through it. We have sorrows that keep weighing us down or financial struggles that are making us feel warn and old. And while these burdens lay heavy on our heart, it seems as if the people around us aren’t concerned or don’t care.

Likely, it’s not that they don’t care but more that they have their own issues or perhaps don’t realize that you’re hurting. They help when they can and they listen to as much as they can accept, but it’s not enough when we’re hurting and need a friend who’ll just stay and comfort us.

There is someone who is always there, sees everything, feels everything and whose heart is burdened with our hurts, and whose heart rejoices in our happiness.  Jesus will never leave us – we may leave Him and we may forget that He’s right there, but He is always there ready to listen, ready to comfort and ready to help.

Talk to Him. Share your burdens with Him. Get the peace that IS waiting for you when you talk to Him. He does care and what’s really great is that He CAN DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT.

There is a friend that sticks closer than a brother.” …Proverbs18:24