Love is in the ‘Heir’ - It Matters
Monday, January 28
Galatians 5:22-23 (The Passion Translation)
But the fruit produced by the Holy Spirit within you is divine love in all its varied expressions:
joy that overflows, peace that subdues, patience that endures, kindness in action, a life full of virtue, faith that prevails, gentleness of heart, and strength of spirit. Never set the law above these qualities, for they are meant to be limitless.
In today’s culture, the word love is thrown around haphazardly and is almost always considered and emotion. In fact, most Christians even have a misinformed idea of what love is when it comes to being a fruit of the Spirit. Love isn’t ‘a’ fruit of the Spirit, it is ‘the’ fruit of the Spirit. Love is who God is, therefore love is who the Holy Spirit is. If someone is born again, they have been changed into His image and therefore love becomes their character. The fruit of love is the evidence that causes others to see and know that you have a relationship with the Father and that the Holy Spirit is at work in your life. Think about how mush easier this makes your Christian walk. Instead of having to understand and practice all of what most people consider the fruit of the Spirit, all you have to do is walk in love. When you are patient with someone, you are showing them an expression of who God, or Love, really is. The same is true for the others as well. Your joy, peace, kindness, etc., are all avenues through which others experience the fruit of love in your life. Allowing the fruit of the Spirit to be produced in your life will give you the ability to joyful, peaceful, patient, kind, good, faithful, gentle, and self controlled…just like Jesus. - Love and Blessings, Pastor Jeff
Tuesday, January 29
1 John 4:8 (The Passion Translation)
The one who doesn’t love has yet to know God, for God is love.
“For I the Lord do not change; therefore you, O children of Jacob, are not consumed.”
Many people, including Tina Turner, who sang the song, “What’s Love Got to Do With It” consider love an emotion. This idea comes from people lacking an intimate relationship with, and knowledge of, the Lord. You can define love with one word, “God”. The Bible says in no uncertain terms that God is love and that He does not change. So then you have to ask yourself, do emotions change? Thankfully, yes they do. Can you imagine what life would be like if they didn’t? You could be angry, sad, upset, aggravated or what ever emotional state you found yourself in permanently. What scary thought. But, love doesn’t change because the One who is love doesn’t. You have the choice as to whether or not you walk in love no matter what your feelings are telling you. God is the perfect example of love in spite of emotion. At any time throughout history, He could have chosen to let His emotions dictate how He dealt with mankind. Fortunately He chose to let His love for people dictate how He responded to the sin and evil in their lives. So, the next time you don’t ‘feel’ like being a loving person, remind yourself that love isn’t what you feel. If you’re a child of God, love is who you are. Feelings have nothing to do with it. - Love and Blessings, Pastor Jeff
Wednesday, January 30
3 John 5
My beloved friend, I commend you for your demonstration of faithful love by all that you have done for the brothers on their journey, even though they were strangers at the time.
That slow cashier at the grocery store when you’re running behind. The person who cut you off on your drive to work and made you spill your coffee. Your spouse who seems to have mastered the perfect the technique of pushing your buttons. Your dear children who seem to have a case of deafness whenever you’re speaking. That co-worker who seems to think that you should do their job as well as your own and seems to get away with it. If you’re like most people, just reading these descriptions of how others can act has already caused your blood pressure to go up. The idea of walking in love toward these people seems like job for the Mission Impossible team. People seem to get tripped up because they feel like part of walking in love toward someone means that you can’t ‘feel’ upset or angry about someone else’s behavior toward you. This is absolutely not the case. True love isn’t the ability to not feel uncomfortable emotions but it’s choosing to not let your actions and responses be dictated by those emotions. Emotions, whether pleasant or not, are not sinful. God gave you emotions because experiencing them enhances your life. You must learn that you are not an emotional person, rather you are a spiritual person who has emotions. Even though this may not feel at all like it’s the case, you do have it in you to act graciously even though you are put out emotionally. When the Spirit of love lives in you, He will empower you to respond to every situation out of His love. Even when confrontation may have to take place. - Love and Blessings, Pastor Jeff
Thursday, January 31
2 Corinthians 3:6 (The Passion Translation)
He alone makes us adequate ministers who are focused on an entirely new covenant. Our ministry is not based on the letter of the law but through the power of the Spirit. The letter of the law kills, but the Spirit pours out life.
Historically, covenants were entered into by different parties because both would benefit from being aligned with the other. For instance, one group may have excellent warriors while the other were skilled at raising crops. By joining one another through covenant, if anyone attacked the farmers, the warriors would be obligated to come to their defense. Conversely, the farmers would be obligated to share their crops and knowledge of growing them with the warriors. By coming into covenant with someone you were saying that everything I possess is as much yours as it is mine and everything that is yours I have the same right to. This is what makes being a Christian so amazingly wonderful. Jesus entered into covenant with you in spite of the fact that you had nothing to offer Him. He loved you enough to make all of Heaven as much yours as it is His. What a deal! He gave up everything so you could have everything. When all you could offer was sin and death, He graciously gave you His life. Through His covenant with you, He has willingly bound Himself to you for all of eternity. This should easily dispel any doubt as to whether or not He loves you. - Love and Blessings, Pastor Jeff
Friday, February 1
Hebrews 13:20-21 (The Passion Translation)
20 Now may the God who brought us peace by raising from the dead our Lord Jesus Christ so that he would be the Great Shepherd of his flock; and by the power of the blood of the eternal covenant 21 may he work perfection into every part of you giving you all that you need to fulfill your destiny. And may he express through you all that is excellent and pleasing to him through your life-union with Jesus the Anointed One who is to receive all glory forever! Amen!
The word covenant doesn’t carry the weight or meaning that it should in the lives of most believers. In a day and age where everything from buying a house to cell phone service involves signing your name, covenants are equated to a simple contract in the minds of most people. While a covenant is a contract, the covenant involves and, is centered upon, a relationship between the parties involved while a contract does not. This is why, in the Bible, marriage is defined as a covenant. It is more than just the license that the couple signs their names to before the wedding ceremony. It is a bond that is being established on a physical and spiritual level. It is intended to be for life and the only way out of it is through death. This is how Jesus was able to fulfill the Old Covenant and usher in the New. He lived perfectly under the Old and His death enabled the New to begin by fully meeting the Old’s demands. When you received Jesus as your savior, you got in on the New Covenant because of His death. That death bought and paid for your eternal life. Aren’t you glad that He did more than just sign a piece of paper? He established your relationship upon His own life. Because of this all of the Kingdom belongs to you and is at your disposal. - Love and Blessings, Pastor Jeff
Saturday, February 2
Ephesians 5:31-33 (The Passion Translation)
31 For this reason a man is to leave his father and his mother and lovingly hold to his wife, since the two have become joined as one flesh. 32 Marriage is the beautiful design of the Almighty, a great and sacred mystery—meant to be a vivid example of Christ and his church. 33 So every married man should be gracious to his wife just as he is gracious to himself. And every wife should be tenderly devoted to her husband.
It would be a severe understatement to say that marriages today are under constant attack. From, the mindset that fidelity is what a couple chooses for it to be, to the idea that it involves anything other than one man and one woman, the marriage covenant has been reduced to a simple contract of convenience. The reason why Biblical marriage so despised by the enemy is the fact that it is meant to be an earthly example of the relationship between Jesus and His Church. He knows that if he can skew and cloud the beauty of what a God ordained marriage is supposed to look like, He can keep people from seeing the love and intimacy He wants to have with His bride. When people get a perverted and warped view of marriage they get the same picture of the relationship Christ wants with them. The Church needs to get this figured out. Believers are to give themselves as faithfully to Him as He did for them. He longs to be in an intimate working relationship with you that is a shining example of His love and goodness. Let Him be a loving provider of all things good in your life today. - Love and Blessings - Pastor Jeff
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