For the Longest Time . . .

time

If there was such a thing as having some words put in front of me that I could not possibly avoid seeing, these thoughts, these verses would be it:

  • Discerning people use their insight to serve those around them…
  • They use knowledge to build up and unify – not tear down or create division…
  • Sometimes this means having the patience to wait while others think through what you already know . . .
  • Sometimes it means foregoing your preferences for the good of others.
  • Sometimes it might even mean being misunderstood precisely because others can’t yet see what you do . . .
  • They resist the temptation to flaunt knowledge or prove themselves right.”

Hannah Anderson, All That’s Good

“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” Philippians 2:3 ESV

Do we even begin to grasp the reality of what is being said here? How does this correlate with our self centered pride?

“Knowledge puffs up while love builds up.” 1 Corinthians 8:1 NIV

Knowledge or pride in what one knows puffs up one’s ego, whereas love, God’s love, puts the focus not on us but on the well being and mature advancement of the other person. Totally opposite.

“Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ.” Ephesians 4:15 NIV

Speaking the truth in love, does not have us and our knowledge of the truth as the means whereby others are edified, but rather our source and our dependency is focused on Jesus, who is the source of that truth, in fact He is truth. Again, totally opposite. It’s not the truth that is the problem, it where we think the source of that truth resides and it’s not us. That should totally change our delivery.

I’ve being asking God in prayer for a number of weeks to help me understand His thoughts and understand His ways. I know my mind is limited and I don’t understand what He does. I know my heart isn’t anywhere close to what He would have it be. It’s definitely not what it once was but I’ve still got a good way to go.

I understand that our total completeness is in Jesus. No one can honestly read the Bible and not eventually see that. Every word Jesus spoke, everything that He did points to the reality that the fullness of God is personified in Jesus. The kicker for me has always been how to effectively relate the very essence of His love and His truth. His truth has been progressively unfolding in my heart and mind. I’m learning to understand things from God’s perspective. I’m learning to appreciate and really understand my total dependency on Him. I actually see a correlation of Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden prior to the fall. The trust that existed between Adam and Eve and God, the dependency that was the norm, the freedom of innocence. And I also see that in essence, God is getting us back there, putting things back to the way that they are supposed to be. There are scripture verses which illustrate this very concept where Jesus is identified as being the last Adam. (1st Corinthians 15:45-49 NIV) And of course, the means by which God our Father does this, is through His Son Jesus. It’s really beautiful.

We read so often in the scriptures how we are to love one another and speak the truth in love, yet the exact opposite seems to be so readily prevalent in so many of the things we Christians say and do. I don’t think anyone can deny that, it’s everywhere you look and the part that really hurts is that I myself have been complicit in furthering this division. I didn’t think I was but I was. I’m saying was because with God’s grace and help, that changes today. Intent is one thing, that is where we are pretty sure that what we see and understand is correct according to God’s word but the delivery of that intent leaves a lot to be desired. The reason for the delivery problem is because God’s love is missing.

Speaking the truth in love are not just words that we swish over, these words are meant to take root in our hearts and minds and flow out from us in our words and deeds. We obviously can’t possibly do that in and of ourselves, hence the total dependency requirement. Jesus said that without Him we could do nothing. He isn’t kidding. And our heavenly Father isn’t kidding either. Our heavenly Father designed it to be this way.

I have no idea of how the fruit of this realization will unfold or what lies ahead in the remaining days that God will give me and my wife but I can’t help but feel that I have just had cataracts removed from my eyes. That missing ingredient, that vital element is God’s love, flowing through us and it cannot be overlooked, it must not be overlooked, because when we do that, we sidestep the very essence of God.

Worthy is the Lamb! Blessings!

 

 

 

2 Comments

  1. “I can’t help but feel that I have just had cataracts removed from my eyes. That missing ingredient, that vital element is God’s love, flowing through us and it cannot be overlooked, it must not be overlooked, because when we do that, we sidestep the very essence of God.”

    Praise God!

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    1. Hi Linda Lee, yes it was quite a moment and it clearly differentiated in my mind how we can be so close to speaking perceived truth but still miss the overriding requirement of speaking it through God’s love. The whole tone just changes. Not sure how this will all work out from a practical perspective but with God’s grace and help, at least I am very mindful of it now and I am hoping it changes both what I say and how I say it to others and how it may be perceived. Blessings.

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