Tag Archives: love

SEX!!!!!

Another beautiful day, all thanks to You, Father! May I use the time given to me, to do and say and be what You would give You the most glory! For You alone are worthy, praise Your holy name!

1 Thessalonians 4:1-8 (<<click here)

Lord, today’s passage is totally pertinent in the world in which I find myself. In our downfall, we are a sex driven society and it is nigh impossible to not be impacted by it. TV, internet, magazines, email, music, Facebook, movies, our attire – EVERYTHING is sex laden! It is very difficult for me and most everyone else to not be affected in some way! But you call us to be HOLY and being holy means to be set apart. Being “like You” means being “different from the world.” (biblehub.com)

Lord, following You means I want to be like You! You are holy, so I am to be holy. Your Word clearly calls us to sexual purity. I am called to love You with all of my heart, soul, strength, and mind, and to love others as I love myself (Luke 10:27). To be very clear here this is to be Your definition of love, not the world’s. So if I am to fulfill the command to love I will not do anything that would make me hurt someone else from a sexual perspective. Obviously, I will take no physical action sexually but even thinking sexual thoughts is harmful outside the context of my marital relationship. It is detrimental to me and if it became known to Karen or any other party to whom I am having sexual thoughts, it would be detrimental to them as well. Detrimental does not equal love.

Lord, the culture in which I live bucks this like crazy but sex outside of a marital relationship is sin! This is the only context in which we can be 100% committed and that is to our husband or wife. Marriage is a covenantal relationship – to love (by Your definition) till “death us do part.” I know it’s not easy but it’s the way it is supposed to be! Anything else and in any other context, and we are outside of Your will…no matter how solid a relationship is.

Lord, protect our marriages – keep them pure. Help us to love each other as You have called us to. Lord, help those outside of marital relationships to be pure and to avoid the pitfalls of sexual interaction. For those who have not crossed that line – keep them strong and help them wait. For those who have fallen, give them a fresh start, a clean slate as they seek Your love and forgiveness. Help us all, all followers of You, to be set apart – to be different from the world!

July 23rd, 2015, Thurs, 7:17 am

A Rare “Gem” Unearthed

Thank You, Father, for a productive day. Your motivation helped me to pull together many of the components for Sunday’s services. You enabled me to keep on task. May what you have given me bless those who hear. Amen.

1 Thessalonians 3:11-13 (<<click here)

Lord, this passage once again highlights an important spiritual concept for Paul – the idea that we are to be so full of love that it overflows! Not that long ago, I wrote of overflowing when he spoke of it in Philippians 1:9 (“Overflow”)

In this particular passage the love that should “grow and overflow” is all inclusive – it is to be a “love for one another and for all people.” Again my study Bible* makes an excellent point. “It’s not enough merely to be courteous to others, we must actively and persistently show love to them. Our love should be growing continually.”

As it came to mind yesterday, Lord, it’s just so natural to take the easiest path. Instead of letting our love overflow we just want the way that we love to go with the flow. If it’s convenient – sure I can love. If it’s going to make me get out of my comfort zone – eh, is it really that important? But it is that important – love is important.

When it comes to news-worthiness, be it TV or internet, there is an overwhelming amount of junk to jump into and bury ourselves in. But…even in those venues love gets everyone’s attention. Stories that show love for fellow dwellers of earth, be they human or not, stop us in our tracks – they go “viral” for good reason.

As human beings, we are drawn to love! For many, it is a rare “gem” to be unearthed. Even if the “gem” of stone is given to someone else, we have to see it! Our heart’s desire is that we might find that “gem”, too! Why won’t someone give me that “gem”?

Genuine gems are rare – so is genuine love. Lord, You told us (John 13:35) that “everyone will know that [we] are [Your] disciples, if [we] have love for one another.”

Your statement is fact and it must be fleshed out in our lives every day! Genuine gems are valuable – imitation gems not so much. The same goes for love. Manufactured love doesn’t go very far, but genuine love? People are drawn to it. Lord if we would just continually grow and cultivate Your love in us there will be plenty to go around. We can give, give and there will always be more – for Your love knows no end, it just continues to multiply!

Lord, Jesus, help me to love as You love. May I be a vessel where Your love can be cultivated so much so that its abundance will be available to all!

July 22nd, 2015, Wed, 5:57 am

*New Living Translation Life Application Study Bible

Ulterior Motives

Father, I would ask for Your help. This time of year is exhausting! I need Your help to get up and meet with You on a regular basis – I truly realize the utmost importance of it. Help me, I pray. Amen.

1 Thessalonians 2:3-6 (<<click here)

Ulterior motives…they fill our world. We – and that includes me – are guilty of them. We say or do something to or for or with someone in the hopes that our “hidden” desires will be fulfilled. Our desire for power, possessions, sex, and sustenance drive our actions. Many will do absolutely anything to get what we want!

Of course in this passage Paul is speaking of his work for You, Lord – basically his ministry, his calling. But Lord, aren’t we all called to serve You? We may not be planting churches, as such, but aren’t we all either building – or tearing down – Your kingdom?

Lord, You call for us all to have as our purpose “to please [You], not people. [You] alone examine the motives of our hearts.” I would ask that my motives be motivated solely by my love for You! If my love for You permeates me to the very core of my being, that love will impact all of my interaction with those around me, be they people I love, people I know or total strangers! If the motive of my life is love then ulterior must never factor in! Dictionary.com defines ulterior as “being beyond what is seen…intentionally kept concealed” Lord, help my love for You and others to be everything but an ulterior motive. May my love be blaring and blatantly obvious to everyone with whom I come in contact!

July 10th, 2015, Fri, 6:30 am

New Every Morning

(A beautiful shot of a sunrise at Dolly Sods Wilderness Area,
near where I graduated from high school.)

As I look out the window this morning, Father, the sun is barely tinting the sky. It brings to mind a passage from Lamentations 3:22-23. It reminds me that regardless of where we stand before You, Father, whether we are close or have distanced ourselves, “Because of [Your] great love…[Your] compassions never fail. They are new every morning.”

I am so, so grateful that You love me – You love all of us. And not just those who are loveable. And not just those who love You back. You love every single person whom You have brought into existence. Your compassions for us never fail. Not because we deserve them or have earned them but because You are love. (1 John 4:8)

Matthew 5:43-48 gives us quite the challenge. Lord, we are not adherents to the law propitiated by the religious leaders of Your day but we might as well be. The whole idea of loving our neighbors (those that are loveable) and hating our enemies is an idea that we easily gravitate to. And WAY too many people flesh that out every day!

Here’s You response to that mindset, “But I say, love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!

See those exclamation points? Your words are not just idle suggestions – You mean business! From my own vantage point I would think that if anyone would possibly have reason to hate, it is You, Lord. You literally give us everything and are we grateful? …some of us yes but a majority of Your creation, not in the least. We are so arrogant and full of ourselves that we go so far as to deny Your very existence!

But what do you do? You give Your “sunlight to both the evil and the good” and You send Your “rain on the just and the unjust alike.”

And that’s the kicker, God calls us, his “true children”, to act as He would act, “to be perfect, even as [our] Father in heaven is perfect.”

Lord Jesus, that word “perfect” is daunting, to say the least, but it is a calling to be all we were made to be. You know our limitations and You know how far we can be stretched. I would pray that I would be Your “true” child. Your love is long-suffering and You will never give up on me. “Because of Your great love…[Your]compassions never fail. They are new every morning.” Amen –so be it!

Nov 27th, Mon, 6:59 am

Conductor of Love

Father, even though it is overcast as we come together this morning I am truly grateful, as the old hymn says, that “There is sunshine in my soul today”! I would ask that You would give me an opportunity this day to let the “sunshine” radiate through me. Help it to burn through the fog in which people find themselves to illuminate their vision of You. May the Son shine through!

Colossians 3:14 (<<click the green)

Harmony in love, both are very fulfilling but to really be what they are I cannot have only one component. I can sing a solo a cappella and it can be nice but it’s so much more fun if it becomes a duet or a trio or a choir. Throw in some instruments and the possibilities are almost endless! Love is the same way. I can love myself but it is not nearly as enjoyable as loving someone else. Thinking of loving God and others has so many facets and possibilities. The breadth and depth of what that means take my breath away!

When I work together and I am clothed in love, with all of my brothers and sisters in Christ what harmony is generated. Too many times lack of love brings discord in the faith community. Lord, help me to be a conductor of love. And enable me to allow love to permeate my being to the very core. Change me so that every thought, every action, every word, everything that motivates me is immersed and filled with love. Help me to be a sponge dunked in love so that no matter how anyone interacts with me love will touch them in some way. It’s a challenge I know. It’s not my normal leaning. I want my needs, my comfort, my satisfaction. My love for others does come through but it needs to come through more! I pray that love in action becomes my leaning!

June 23rd, 2015, Tues, 8:22 am