In a world filled with hate…

…may I reflect the LOVE that is unconditional.  Lord, help me!  May I love as You have loved us.  You bestowed Grace and Mercy upon us, ALL people, through Your Son, Jesus Christ.  May I not be selfish with that Love!  May I overflow with what You have given me so that others too may know Your Love!

Where is the blame in these acts of violence?  Society?  Laws? Politicians?  Human Nature?

Where does it stop?  How does it change?  With more gun laws?  With more hate?  With more discrimination?

No.  It starts with me.  It starts with MY HEART, MY MIND.  Lord, if I am to love You with all my heart, all my mind, all my strength, all my soul, then I must love what YOU love:  Your creation, Your people, Your promises.

We as the human race are so broken.  We are prone to sin, to lie, to hate.  It is only through CHOOSING to love that we can overcome those natural tendencies we have.

In the midst of differences, LOVE.  See the beauty and interconnectedness through our differences.  Each of us is a thread in a vast tapestry.  Each of us, as tangled as we may be, add color and texture to the final Image of Grace.  We NEED the different colors, textures, and facets in order to see the Image of Christ in each other.  So LOVE.  Honor.  Extend grace and mercy.

And go.  Encourage others to do the same.

Whatever we do, readers, we do to and for Christ.  Be a vessel.

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You are for me…

I have been reflecting a lot on Romans 8.  For a while, I have been getting stuck on the whole concept of “You are for me.”  Specifically, this line:  If God is for us, who can be against us? (verse 31b)  What does this mean?  Who can be against me?

Then it hits me.  God LOVES me.  He is WITH me.  When I am apart from His will, His Spirit draws me back in.  He guide me.  He gives me opportunities to obey Him, to draw near to Him, to seek forgiveness and His Truth.  He gives  us victory when we overcome the lies of the enemy with His Truth, with His strength.  God’s victory is SURE against the enemy.  God’s desire is for me to be continually sanctified and transformed to His likeness.  Nothing can separate us from Him when we are adopted through Christ.

He will not give me EVERYTHING.  He gives me what I need.  He does not want me do whatever I want; He wants me to seek after His heart and follow His will.  He faithfully reminds me of His grace, His mercy.  He fills me with His love.  His fruit grows within my heart and soul.  He desires my worship of Him!  I want to crave Him above all things!

I am weak.  I fall.  And His Spirit lifts me up, and the blood of Christ washes over me.  We begin again.  And again.  And again.  I am human.  He is full of patience and mercy.  He knows my weaknesses, and leads me to His Truth so that I may learn to flee from temptations.  He always provides me a way out from them!  He equips me with HIS armor so that I may stand firm against the devil and his schemes.

This is what it means that He is for me.  He does not forsake me in my times of needs.  He surrounds me, fills me with strength, creates the safety net beneath me that I will inevitably need time and time again.  And He allows me, through time and reflection, to see His hand in each and every one of those falls I take.  I am thankful for my weaknesses, for the strength He provides to bring me through them each time.  He carries me, even when I don’t recognize it.  Yep, I am human, and quite often blind to His Holy Work.  So when He does reveal that to me, I am in awe.  I am humbled and thankful.  He has saved me so many times!  Thank You, Father!  Thank You for Your limitless love!  I am constantly in awe of You!