It's been awhile since my last post. I went to visit some friends in Reno, and then we went to Canada in search of the northern lights. I want to resume my study on Yeshua/salvation in the Old Testament, but I would like to share with you something I did just before I left. It was an assignment that I worked on for a leadership training class. The question posed was, how does you incorporate Chapter 13 of 1 Corinthians to a leadership role? Here is my answer.
God is love. It is the operating force in the universe. It is like gravity or electricity—His love operates unseen but is ever present.
Jesus brought His Father’s love down to me, and it flows within His blood.
I am washed in that blood.
I have the greatest force in the universe in me now.
The Divine equation is thus: HIS LOVE + my surrender = operational power every day!
If I speak in angelic tongues—or tongues of men that sounds heavenly and love is missing? If I advise all I want with wise words and HIS LOVE is not present in my heart, or I am motivated by pride and a “Listen to me!” attitude, then I am only touching the person’s mind or heart, and not the person’s spirit. I must allow HIS LOVE to operate in me in everything I say.
If I walk strongly without HIS LOVE present in my heart, and wow people with what I know, and seem to be mighty in my faith, my nothing will yield nothing for His Kingdom. I must see others as Christ see them and how He sees me. I have been forgiven much. I must forgive much. I must allow HIS LOVE to operate in me to tell me who I am.
“Look at me!” is no substitute for “Look at Him!” What I do in HIS LOVE is to point only to Jesus. Thus, only to Him will the glory go. Not to me, my works and my need for approval. I must allow HIS LOVE to operate in me in everything I do.
HIS LOVE (in me) is patient with me, so I must be patient with others. His timeline for me and other people is just that: His timeline. I am in the process of working through the cross, with some areas still needing healing on one side; on the other side, where the victory is won, I find some of myself there. I am still in a process. So are others. I can be patient with myself and others only if His love is operating in me.
HIS LOVE (in me) is kind. Of all the people He talked to, He only excoriated the Pharisees, for kindness left them long ago and had been replaced with scorn. I must commiserate with those I come across, for someday, I may need that cold water in the desert. I can be kind only if His love is operating in me.
HIS LOVE (in me) does not envy. Why? God alone is my Provider. I have access to Him every day, every minute. I have it all if I have Him. Others may have more, or may have less, but I need to be content with my lot. He is good. I can cease to envy only if His love is operating in me.
HIS LOVE (in me) does not boast. Why? What I am today is because of Him and not because of me. When I speak, let it be about “Christ and Him crucified.” I can ignore the need to have others approve of me and not promote myself only if His love is operating in me.
HIS LOVE (in me) is not proud. Why? I am nothing without Him. If I “boast” and act “proud,” let it be to shout of His great love. I can ignore the “What about me?” only if His love is operating in me.
HIS LOVE (in me) does not dishonor others. Why? They equally bear the image of the Heavenly Father and Jesus died for them as well. The Golden Rule rules. I must love my neighbor as I love myself, and I must love Him with all my heart, mind, soul and spirit. I can serve others and Him only if His love is operating in me.
HIS LOVE (in me) will not seek to elevate myself. Why? If God is for us, who can be against us? If God is for us, why would we feel insecure? I can know that these are His doors opening and I need not fear only if His love in me is operating.
HIS LOVE (in me) will not fly off the handle. Why? He sees beyond the stupid/childish/negative/sneering/judgmental/hopelessness and sees the deeper cause: fear. He overcame this world. My anger is a sign that I am not trusting Him to sort it out. I am serving fear. I can overcome the world and its provocations only if His love in me is operating.
HIS LOVE (in me) doesn’t keep track of every knife in the back, every harsh word spoken, and every deed done in malice or ignorance. Records are kept for retaliation and recrimination, not for restoration. I can keep one record: what He did for me on the cross. I can have a selective memory only if His love in me is operating.
Evil = no God, no love. Truth = know God, know love. This is pure (washed by His blood) and simple (His wisdom, not mine). Just desserts? Justice? Just us? No. Just Him. I can only see His hand in the victories and in the trials only if His love in me is operating.
HIS LOVE (in me) always protects. Why? To quote the band Switchfoot, “Love alone is worth the fight.” He is fierce in His love. I cannot explain the cross any other way. I can guard the precious things of God (starting with each person He sends my way) only if His love in me is operating.
HIS LOVE (in me) always trusts. Why? That despite sin’s hard icy crust over the planet, His love, justice and mercy will melt that permafrost like a meteorite strike. His will shall be done on earth as it is now being done in heaven. Until then, I can trust the outcome even when I cannot see it only if His love in me is operating.
HIS LOVE (in me) always hopes. As long as I draw a breath, as long as anyone draws a breath, hope says that He will keep seeking to show Himself. Love is the seed under the snow, the sun behind the clouds, the joy behind the pain. Emily Dickinson said it best: “Hope” is the thing with feathers – That perches in the soul - And sings the tune without the words - And never stops - at all – Hope sees what He sees, and I can only have His perfect vision if His love is operating in me.
HIS LOVE (in me) keeps on keepin’ on. The race of faith must be run. It is not a walk, lest we do it in our power. It is not a crawl, lest our knees become so bloody we lose sight of the goal. It is not a dance, lest the music carries us off the track and into a world filled with our imagination. It is a race: forceful, fierce and shoed with faith. I will run it with joy only if His love in me is operating.
HIS LOVE (in me) never fails. “Jesus is the same today, yesterday and forever.” I can only succeed in bringing this love that has the cross under it and the Savior over it only if His love in me is operating.
HIS LOVE will fill in the gaps until we meet Him face to face.
HIS LOVE will allow me to know Him here, and I will be in HIS LOVE when I go home.
Faith is the wind in our sails.
Hope is our northern star.
Love is the very ship we are in.
Our Captain calls.
He only asks me to surrender my heart and get on board!