WHO LOVES YOU – Part 2 – The Love of the Son

God proved His love for us by sending His one and only Son into the world so that we might live eternally through Him. Jesus loves you more than a pearl of great price (Matthew 13:45).

This is true, authentic love: we did not earn or deserve God’s love, but He loved us first and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins (1 John 1:9, 4:19).

Jesus left all that was His, relinquished his kingly status, forsook the glories of heaven; and for 33 whole years, He lived on this sin-cursed earth.

Then, at the peak of His manhood, He purchased us back from Satan for the Father by suffering the horrendous death on Calvary’s Cross.

He gave His life so that we could live as God’s adopted children, joint heirs with Jesus to receive all that the Father owns. We will dwell in God’s Kingdom and enjoy fellowship with the Trinity now and for eternity.

We begin each day by sitting at His feet and learning from Him: talking to Him, listening to Him, reading His Word, meditating on what we read, praising Him and waiting on Him.

He stills the chaos in our body and soul – our thoughts and emotions. We remain in His presence until we feel His Spirit directing our next step (Proverbs 3:5-6).

Jesus empowers us throughout our day and night. He never, ever leaves us for any reason or circumstance (Hebrews 13:5). He meets life’s demands on us by using our body and soul to accomplish His will in and through them.

Prayer:
Father God, You give us the gift of new life each and every day. Just waking up is proof that You love us. We often take for granted things like air to breathe and eyes to see; but each of these miracles is evidence to us that You love us.

Remind us to appreciate You and not to take You for granted. All through the day, You send people, events and natural wonders to bless us. We want to live in Your divine will through the divine opportunities You provide for us.

Thought for the Day:
Trying to find a fulfilling relationship with another human being is close to impossible, and only the rare interdependent couple ever succeed; however, every human being can find fulfillment in the love of God and in Jesus Christ whom He sent. – John 6:29

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Proof of God’s Love – Part 2

God absolutely cares about us and the matters, which are important to us (1 Peter 5:7). He has our best interest at heart.
God’s discipline is a proof of His love for us (Hebrews 12:6).

He helps us to cast down the idols in our soul (2 Corinthians 10:5). I know that I have an idol in my life when my feelings get hurt and when other negative emotions start popping up in my heart.

If something irritates me, angers me or stresses me out, I can be sure there is an idol at the root of the issue, which I need to surrender to God.

Many times the issues, for which I am crusading, are best left as a matter of prayer, rather than trying to influence someone to accept my ideas or to act a certain way.

Another idol of mine is organization and schedules. I keep lists and calendars. I love order and proficiency. I feel secure and they keep me from forgetting appointments. They help me to have what we need, when we need it.

However, other people in my life are more impulsive and extemporaneous. They live a fluid life, and my need for order restricts them.

I had to surrender this idol to God and then learn to be more adaptable, flexible and spontaneous. This helped me to have more fun.

Of course, my ability to keep schedules helps us to stay organized, but I had to learn to be less inhibited and to lay down the idol of my need to attempt to control life.

God is also healing me from codependency. I am learning not to serve others by putting their interests and needs above my own to the point of depriving myself of the peace and joy of walking in God’s Spirit. ( http://www.amazon.com/The-Christian-Codependence-Recovery-Workbook/dp/1936451050 )

God is teaching me to live interdependently with other people and to hear His will for my involvement in their lives. Many times, the discernment He gives me is a matter of prayer rather than action.

Prayer:
Father God, I am learning to trust that You are faithful to restore balance and peace in our life in Your own way and time. Thank You for reminding me that You love the people I care about more than I do.

You have a perfect plan for each life, and You will work out everything in their life for their good (Romans 8:28). You may use me to help in some situation; but more often than not, You choose to do the work in their lives as I pray for them.

Thank You for the freedom from idols that You provide for us. Help us to walk in Your Spirit, so that we will not fulfill the carnal impulses of our flesh (Galatians 5:15-21).

Thought for the Day:
As we monitor the negative emotions, which disturb the peace of God in our soul, we can rely on God to reveal the issue at the root of them, so that we can lay down these idols at His feet.
( http://www.theophostic.com )

Healing Relationships – Part 1

There are four types of human relationships. We all fit into one of them, or a combination of several:
Independent – self-sufficient
Codependent – live for others
Dependent – despise living alone, have no personal identity                                 Interdependent – mutual, reciprocal relationships

These relational types describe how we relate to other people. If we are already functioning in interdependent relationships, we are healthy and have healthy interactions.

Otherwise, we are in needy, dysfunctional relationships, which are unhealthy for us and the other people in our life. Changing our beliefs about life and our self, and altering our attitude will bring needed healing to our soul.

In dysfunctional associations, we expect the magic of a fairytale existence; we pride our self in living as the martyr or savior; we give sacrificially and then feel anger and bitterness when we do not receive the love we believe we are owed in return.

In unhealthy relationships, our self-worth is based outside of our self, in people, places and things. We desire financial security, privacy, status in society, respect, degrees or popularity. We resent any change or adjustment required of us.

However, everything in life is fluid, temporary and undependable. We even disappoint our self. We cannot look to external values and relationships for our security.

When we concentrate on maintaining the status quo, we fail miserably every time we try. That is why the Serenity Prayer has grown in popularity.

Following its advice will ensure that we keep our focus on eternal matters, rather than on temporal issues, which cannot help but to disappoint us. We will also walk in God’s will each moment of every day.
Serenity Prayer:

“Living one day at a time;
enjoying one moment at a time;
accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
forever in the next.
Amen.
– by the American theologian Reinhold Niebuhr

Thought for the Day:
Attempting to control our environment and relationships will guarantee that we suffer from stress-related issues, as well as to alienate those who mean the most to us.