Bible Passage for Meditation: 1 John 4:7-11
Key Verse: “Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.” 1 John 4:7, 8
It never ceases to amaze me how often the Epistles of John speak of love and how John does not mince words. He goes always to the point, and it is a sharp and sometimes painful point. In essence, if I don’t love, I don’t know God. Ouch!
Then I look back at Galatians 5:22. Love is the very first fruit of the Spirit that is listed, which tells me that it should be the first visible sign of my transformed life. Also in Romans 12:9 we are told, “Let love be without hypocrisy” (ASV).
So what kind of love does God expect me to have toward people?
This question has sent me digging through my Bible and the Spirit of Prophecy writings on multiple occasions, often when I feel chastened by God for the thoughts in my heart and my tendency to unloving deeds. After all, I’m human. Although I desperately long to be like Jesus, to have His mindset, His deeds, and His actions and reactions, I find that my selfish human ways often interfere.
Through the power of the Word, God is slowly changing me. When I find that I don’t “feel” loving toward a person, I reflect upon 1 John. If I truly love God, love will show. No, it isn’t easy, and it doesn’t come from my own corrupt heart, but God can change our hearts. I’ve also found that showing love, even when I don’t want to, brings a peace that surpasses all understanding. This doesn’t mean that I naturally fit with every personality. No, some people still tend to get under my skin every time I see them. However, God is teaching me to love them. They are children of God, and the truth is that I may be the only face of Jesus they will ever see. So I better act like Him! How does He act? Always in love!
Heart Prayer Challenge:
Gracious Father, we pray for a magnificent outpouring of Your Holy Spirit, that we may love others as You love us. May we find in our hearts room for all, even those we don’t naturally like. We need Your sweet Spirit, not that we may boast of anything but that we may look like Your glorious Son to the world. Thank You for hearing this prayer. In Jesus’ name we pray, Amen.
By Kat Taylor
(Kat works full time for a government agency in Kansas, but her real heart and passion is in ministry. She is a prayer leader as well as a member of the 100 Days of Prayer leadership team. To read more of Kat’s personal testimony, CLICK HERE.)