Easy To Say, But Hard To Do
Heavenly Father strengthen us as we pour out so that You can pour in and lead us as we pour forth in Your name.
April 27, 2020
Good Morning Princesses!
As we close out April 2020, I want to extend overarching prayers to you, your family, and loved ones for health, wellness, peace of mind, and rest. As a country, we are nearing an end to some state-mandated shelter in place orders. As these orders are slowly lifted, there remains with many an uneasy angst of what life will look like. I pray that whatever your thoughts may be that God's peace that passes all your understanding will guard your hearts and mind. God is in control Princesses...always has and always will be! (I think this would be a time for two snaps if God asked us to provide the sound effect!)
1. A Love Thing
Let's jump into 1 John Chapter 2 verses 1-17.
Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked. (v. 4-6)
Whoever loves his brother abides in the light, and in him there is no cause for stumbling. (v. 10)
The big theme of these verses- Love.
Easy to say, but many times hard to carry out. I'm not sure about all of you but John's direct tone in verses 1-17 of 1 John 2 makes it unequivocally clear that there is no gray area with this commandment. I found myself re-reading this passage several times. Love- hmm. Love family. Love friends. Love co-workers. Love haters. Love everyone. The answer, keep reading!
In John 13:34, we find our answer. Jesus makes it clear and reinforces that He has also modeled it for us:
“... Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
2. An old commandment that has been with us since the beginning?
While the commandment in John 13:34 and 1 John 2:10 may appear "new" because they are mentioned in the New Testament, what is John saying to us in 1 John 2 verse 7?
Beloved, I am writing you no new commandment, but an old commandment that you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word that you have heard the commandment of love can be traced back to the Old Testament. (1 John 2:7)
Let's go back in the Old Testament, specifically, in Leviticus 19:18:
"‘Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against anyone among your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord.
Leviticus 19:18 was given to Moses by God to speak to the entire Israelite community. As observed by an Israeli scholar the aforementioned verse is considered the heart of the Torah. Interestingly, as we look closer at the next set of verses you may notice that the passage is not just meant for a few, but it was to be delivered to the entire Israelite community to be passed down from generation to generation.
Now, take a look at Deuteronomy 6:4-9
Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 5 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. 6 These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 7 Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. 8 Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads. 9 Write them on the doorframes of your houses and on your gates.
In this Old Testament verse note verse 5 and 9:
Verse 5- Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.
Verse 8- Tie them as symbols on your hands and bind them on your foreheads.
3. An Interesting Practice and Heartfelt Conclusion
The practice of binding commandments on your foreheads" is a literal practice that has been followed by the Jewish culture. Called tefillin or phylactery, it is a small black leather box that contains scrolls of parchment inscribed with verses from the Torah. The tefillin or phylactery is worn by observant adult Jews during weekday morning prayers (in Ortohodx communities the tefillin is only worn by men; for Non-Orthodox communities, the tefillin can be worn by men and women). Can you imagine wearing the phylactery of Deuteronomy 6:5 on your forehead today? We actually do, but not on our foreheads. Keep reading!
If we pull together both the Old and New Testament verses, we see the connections from old to new, from beginning to present, from then to now. We also can see the link from the commandment that was given to Moses from God to share with the Israelites and later from Jesus given to John for us.
In all, we can draw a singular conclusion. Since the beginning, God's love has been central. From the creation, to the birth, life, death and resurrection of Christ, it all points to love. As Christians and followers of Christ, through the Holy Spirit, we are commanded to love.
Easy, no. Hard, yes. But with God, because He first loved us, we can hold this commandment in our hearts making it all the more possible for us to love. As John reminds us, we are "the beloved", strong, word abiding, and overcomers. 1 John 2:14
Let your light shine princesses and lead with love.
4. Join us for WEEK #3- April 28th
"What Love Is" by Kelly Minter. There is still time to sign up, so please feel free to do so using the link below and invite a friend.
How will this virtual online study work? Here's the set-up...
1. Complete the registration and a link will be sent to you to finalize your information;
2. A login link will be sent for you to join the session either via laptop, tablet or iPad, desktop or phone;
3. We will pray, fellowship and spend time in God's word (specifically the letters of 1, 2 and 3 John);
4. Timeframe- 6:00 - 7:00 pm; and
5. Dates-Tuesday's - April 14- May 19.
Our new study is underway "What Love Is". See the Bible Study link to register=> HERE
Oh, princesses of faith...remember
Prayer “empowers and ‘charges up’ every other piece so they can be used effectively against the enemy. Without prayer… your armor, cannot, will not, be infused with the power that only God’s-Spirit can give."
DON'T FORGET...Click on the icon below to access...
Know that through the Holy Spirit you can:
do things you couldn't;
feel things you didn't; and
know things you wouldn't.