It seems to me that as my Christian walk deepens, I am always finding one more perfect nugget laid down by God in His Word for me. One more great prayer method. One more way to think about a Greek word and its application. One more way to train my unruly thoughts to be more Christ-like.
It’s exhausting, this learning-how-to-drink-God-in business.
But then I remember God wants me to drink Him in. The rest—all the lists and methods and prayer journaling is good and definitely a way to grow in my walk—but it is not the same as time spent in the Word, asking, searching, turning verses over in your head so much so that when you wake up, they are on your lips. Spending time with God is saying, “Here are my dreams. Do you care about them?” And then breaking open when your heart cries aloud to your Abba because you know He truly does care.
If you are the type of Christian gal who likes to make lists (after the aforementioned quiet time with J.C.), then you might enjoy the verse I stumbled on while reading Beth Moore’s Praying God’s Word. I like The Message’s version of 1 Corinithians 16:13: “Keep your eyes open, hold tight to your convictions, give it all you’ve got, be resolute, and love without stopping.”
Keep your eyes open. When people around you are eager to traffic in other’s pains, you know who to run to.
Hold tight to your convictions. This morning you confessed your sin of gossip. Why is it so easy to forget you want to leave it behind?
Give it all you’ve got. God has big plans for me. All of us. When I am tempted to dial it in, skip the call to the friend or otherwise look away from need, Lord, renew my fervor.
Be resolute. Jesus, you are faithful and unchanging. Today, let me be focused and determined on one thing you have set aside for me to do.
Love without stopping. “But I can’t do this!” I cry. I have been wronged, hurt, misunderstood. Jesus tells me gently, “I have been, too.” I have an example of perfect love—if I will but see it.
This last one is the hardest. It makes us come outside of ourselves and stop the navel gazing. How can we possibly “love without stopping?” It’s nothing we can do on our own strength. Loving people is messy work. They will disappoint us, just as we will disappoint them. But as believers, we have the power of Christ within us to do what we could not on our own. Left to our own sinful messes, we would choose to love for a few minutes. With Christ, we are energized, commanded and emboldened to this audacious challenge. And we’re loved through it, too. God knows the struggles you have loving that particular person. He knows. Rest in that, sweet sister. He knows how hard it is, and that’s why He says come to me and we will love without stopping together.
What about you? How are you “loving without stopping” today?