Do You Love Me? If So Prove It!
I must first admit how honored and privileged I am to be called to the ministry, I pray that I never lose this mentality because I know there possibly could be pastors out there who forget that we didn’t choose the ministry but instead God chose us to the ministry. That’s the Calvinist in me speaking there. But I am so thankful to be chosen to do Gods work and to be honest I would not rather be doing anything else then preaching Gods word and sharing His timeless message to an ever changing generation, that’s the Armenian in me. If you will be patient with me I am trying to develop some type of systematic theologyJ! In our third week of the series Abiding in Him, we looked at the scriptures John 15:9-11 where Jesus said “I have loved you even as the Father has loved Me. Remain in My love. When you obey my commandments, you remain in My love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in His love. I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will over flow! To obey Jesus is to love Him and to Love Him is to obey Him. Anything else is hypocritical and contradictory.
It is a command to remain in the love of Christ because it’s where we stay spiritually renewed or as I said today keep our batteries recharged. The word here in the Greek used for love is Agape which means unconditional love, a love that has no end, as far as east is from the west we are loved by Him and by us praying and reading and meditating this is how we are to remain in His love. It is this love that unites us to Him as the branch is united to the vine; His love is the very source of our being. While we are remaining in His love, praying and reading and listening also, it is here that we receive the commandments of God and when we see them and understand them by being obedient we are demonstrating our love for him. Its one thing to be a Christian it is another to say and mean Jesus is Lord or master over every area in my life.
The commandments of God are not burdensome as a matter of fact Jesus says the complete opposite by saying that His yolk is easy and His burden is light. There are many a commands in the bible, the Old Testament carries 613 alone and in the New Jesus narrowed it down to two which are love God and Love your neighbor. Though today we focused on one commandment primarily which was the great commission we are to strive to do the rest. The secret place is the place to stay in His love; I can’t see how Christians go a whole day without setting aside 30min to an hour to focus on Jesus. I’m reminded of the story of Martha and Mary who were both sisters. Jesus came to their house and sat among them. Though they were sisters they were very distinct in how they responded to Jesus. Martha was the busy one, always doing something like cleaning the house, cooking, playing with the kids, talking with her girlfriends, getting her hair and nails done, going to the grocery store and picking up Johnny from daycare, emphasis added; while it was Mary who SAT at the feet of Jesus and when Martha saw this she was very disturbed and even complained to Jesus to command Mary to get up and help only to hear a reply from Jesus Himself that what Mary was doing was more important. Someone when asked in the hurry of this life how did they find time to pray? Their answer was I pray that a have time to pray. Quiet time is not an option it’s a command, “remain in my love,” and to obey Him is our demonstration of our love for Him.
We as a church family are growing into a community of love to be poured out on those who need it most, but if we constantly give it out and do not receive it continually what kind of community will we become? Next Sunday is our last week of the series where we will be looking at what it means to be a friend of God. I pray that as we all learn together we are not just talking the talk but actually walking the walk. I also pray that you attack the secret place with a proper mindset before entering. Remember how you enter is probably how you will leave, not everybody gets a burning bush experience in the secret place. I would ask you to pray for my wife and daughter as they travel back from Minnesoooooooota as someone from and with a Minnesota accent makes it sound and also pray for me as I travel to pick them up Tuesday from the airport in Louisvull, as someone from and with a Kentucky accent makes it sound. I love you guys so much and am so grateful to serve you as pastor. The Lord bless you and keep you and may His Face shine upon you.