Love is a Habit/Love is an Action


First – Sunday is November 30th – Barbados’ 42nd anniversary of our independence from Great Britain.  I was going to have a whole post on Independence…. and what it means for a Christian, but …. maybe later on today. I’m on a roll with the Love posts, so….

++++++

Two for the price of one! Realized I missed a day of the Purpose Driven Live devoitional (Love is an Action, two days ago) so I’m going to comment on both of them.  

When I think about love, I think about action.  I can say I have love, but if I don’t do anything, it’s just talk. It’s just like faith – it is exercised in action:

But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” 
Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by what I do. (James 2:18 NIV)

 

Dear children, let us stop just saying we love each other; let us really show it by our actions. 1 John 3:18 (NLT)

To show love, you have to act!  Acts of selflessness, acts of kindness, acts of mercy, acts of forgiveness – all actions that show love.  Literary types will tell you there is a rule when writing scripts: “Show, don’t tell!”  A good story just doesn’t tell you what happened, it describes the scene – sets the mood.  

Over and over again, in the Bible, God commands us to love each other. And you can’t command an emotion. If I told you “Be sad!” right now, you couldn’t be sad on cue. Just like an actor, you can fake it, but you’re not wired for your emotions to change on command. Have you ever told a little kid, “Be happy!” I’m trying, daddy!

Very true – you can’t command an emotion.  But you can command a choice, an action.  Love the thought: ‘Be sad, right now!’  ….  Why not try that out on someone??? :mrgreen:  (You’d probably get wierd looks.)

We can talk a good act: “I love people.” But do we really love them? Do you really love them? Our love is revealed in how we act toward them.

Yeah that’s what I’m saying… talk is cheap.  Let’s strive to act out our love.  Does anyone have a problem demonstrating that love? Any thoughts?

+++++

I love this: “Love is a Habit” (today’s Purpose Driven Devotion).  

If you only love on and off like a light switch, you do not love others like God wants you to love. Jesus said, “If you only love those who love you what credit is that to you?” (Luke 6:32 NIV).

 

His point is this: anybody can love those who love them. Becoming a master lover means you learn to love the unlovable. It’s when you love people who don’t love you, when you love people who irritate you, when you love people who stab you in the back or gossip about you.

Now I’ll admit: this is difficult.  Very difficult.  Especially for me – because I have a short fuse.  I hate when people upset me.  I blow up very quickly…. but it doesn’t last.  I usu use it like a stop valve.  I will quarrel and fume until it’s out of my system, and then I’m good again.  But I can’t stand stupid people! (oops, did I say that out loud? Ok I got more work to do here….)  I’m working at loving the unloveable.

When you realize how much God loves you – with an extravagant, irresistible, unconditional love – then his love will change your entire focus on life. If we don’t receive God’s love for us, we’ll have a hard time loving other people. I’m talking about loving the unlovely, loving the difficult, loving the irritable, loving people who are different or demanding.

I agree – I needed to receive God’s love before I could even accept myself  or even start work on loving others!   (Thank you, Daddy, for your love for me!)

You can’t do that until you have God’s love coming through you. You need to know God’s love so it can overflow out of your life into others.

Let that be our aim – to receive God’s love and work on loving others.  How difficult is it for you to love people who ‘spitefully use you’, according to Scripture?

Love Is a Skill!


I think I’ll keep this up for a bit:  the Purpose Driven Life devotion for today is entitled: “Love is a Skill.”  That one I haven’t thought of – but I can see that is true:

Love is a skill that can be learned. In other words, it’s something you can get good at and that means you get better at love by practicing love.

 

You may think you’re a good lover, but God wants you to become a great lover, a skilled lover, a master lover. Yet, most people never learn how to love. You can become an expert at relationships.

 

Interesting concept huh? Practicing love.  This follows directly after the premise I wrote about yesterday – love is a choice, so you can actually practice it, and get better at it!  Wow! 

Wouldn’t you like to become known as a person of extraordinary love? When people speak of you they might say: “He doesn’t care who you are or what you look like.” “She doesn’t care where you’ve been or what you’ve done or where you’re from.”

 

I know that I’ve practiced loving people without even realizing it was a principle.  I deliberately try to see past what is placed before me in terms of attitude and stuff…  but I’m working at being more loving.  

The only way you get skilled at something is to practice. You do it over and over. The first time you do it, it feels awkward, but the more you do it, the better you become.

 

The same is true with love (1 John 4:7). Let’s practice loving each other. As the Bible says, “Practice these things; be committed to them, so that your progress may be evident to all” (1 Timothy 4:15 HCSB).

I concur with the conclusion.  So let me encourage you all: let’s all practice love and get good at it!  How do you think you can practice?

(BTW – To all my American family in the blogosphere: Happy Thanksgiving!… I’ve put it as a request on several of my friend’s blogs, and now I’ll put it on mine: We in Barbados don’t celebrate Thanksgiving as a national holiday, but I’m all open for some of the feast! So please fax, email or FedEx me some of the food!) 😉  😆  Turkey, anyone???? :mrgreen:

Love: A Choice, not a Feeling…


Love is a choice and a commitment. You choose to love or you choose not to love.

 

Today we’ve bought into this myth that love is uncontrollable, that it’s something that just happens to us; it’s not something we control. In fact, even the language we use implies the uncontrollability of love. We say, “I fell in love,” as if love is some kind of a ditch. It’s like I’m walking along one day and bam! – I fell in love. I couldn’t help myself.

 

But I have to tell you the truth – that’s not love. Love doesn’t just happen to you. Love is a choice and it represents a commitment.

The above quote comes from today’s PurposeDrivenLIfe.com devotional.  It struck me, because one of my dear friends who has been struggling with family issues has asked me – when I patiently listened to her cry for the millionth time – why I loved her so much.

I was so struck by this devotion that I sent her the above quote in an email with this answer:  “Why do I love you? Because I choose to.”   

Be encouraged. Today, tell someone you love them.  Better yet – decide to love. I have told newly wedded couples and soon to be married couples about my relationship with my wife.  I tell them that I’ve always lived by this principle of choice.  There are times we don’t like each other. There are times we fight.  BUT I have chosen her.  I choose to love her – whatever her faults.  And she has chosen to love me despite mine.  Love is not a feeling – it’s a choice.

What has God Called you to do?


I love this snippet from Perry Noble that I found on another blog…. I love what he says “God’s in charge of the super, you’re  in charge of the natural.”  I love that!  Makes sense.  Too many Christians know exactly what God has called them to do, but refuse to do it – and expect that God will just drop an aswer to prayer on their laps. Why?

Supernatural from NewSpring Media on Vimeo

(BTW the Marvin Gaye in the tags is because he samples ‘Let’s Get it On’ in the sermon… watch the clip!)

What has God called you to do? Are you doing it? Answer back!

I Dare you to MOVE!


One of my favourite websites is Godlimations. (For Godly animations! Isn’t that 😎 or what????) I love this website because the author is using one of his I’m sure myriad of gifts (Flash animation) to get the Word of God out.

As he says on his websites “About Godlimations” page:

Since my initiation to Christianity, I’ve wanted nothing more than to serve and participate
in the awesomeness of God. You may think “Christ endured a tortuous ending just so we
can make flash animations and convey His message to the masses!?” For one, Christ is
alive and never ending, and conveying the Word of God in any medium is completely
permissible AND beneficial. Godlimations represents my testimony to share worldwide.

There’s more there, but I don’t want to bore you.  For example of what I’m saying, click on the below link and watch this animation:http://www.godlimations.com/webfolder/dare.html 

And then go to the website and check out the rest of his stuff.  AWESOME….

I dare you to MOVE…. because if he’s moving out and extending the Kingdom of God through the ‘unconventional’ means of Flash animation – why don’t you?????

BTW – to see the animations you will need to download Adobe Flash Player plugins for your browser – or go here

Prophet or Psychic?


I just had a MSN conversation with a lady who I’ve helped in the past.  I haven’t spoken to her in over six months to a year, and then suddenly her MSN window pops up.  I was glad to see her, and I asked how her situation is now, as I remembered the case from a year before.  After she told me she was doing fine, she asks me, “What are you seeing for my future right now?”

😯

WHAT?  

I reply that I’m not a psychic… and I did offer to ask the Lord what he was saying to her and reply via email if He did respond – but to be quite honest I was trying to end the conversation politely.  I did ask if she was troubled or needing counsel for anything – and she said no, she was fine.  As I suspected, immediately after, she nicely ended the conversation with a “bye for now.”

EXCUSE ME?

As I was talking to one of my friends about it, she said:

maybe she needed to get a quick hit from Daddy on where she is and where she going
or maybe she doesn’t feel she can go to Daddy herself
or maybe she just doesn’t want to go to Daddy herself
and prefer for you to just tell her what to do
that is dangerous
cause those types of situations can lead you astray from what you really should be doing

As she said… people coming to any one and prefer that they tell them “what to do” are treading in dangerous ground.  I, for one, will not encourage people coming to me just because I’m prophetic just to absolve all responsibility on their part for hearing what God is saying to them.  Simply put: I’m a prophetic person, not a psychic…

Weekly Spiritual Reflections: Calling on the Breath of God


I went to Weekly Spiritual Reflections and saw this prayer… loved it, and so I’m reproducing it here. Be blessed everyone…

Spirit of God,

Breathe on us peace,

Breathe through us healing,

Breathe in us courage,

Breathe over us hope,

Breathe below us strength,

Breathe above us mercy,

Breathe around us joy,

Breathe on us love,

O Breath of God. Amen.

Denise Pyles, M.Div.