Week 5: Day 34. Those I love...
Updated: Feb 11
"It is for freedom that Christ has set you free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery."
Ponder: "The people I love, I call to account—prod and correct and guide so that they’ll live at their best. Up on your feet, then! About face! Run after God!" Revelation 3:19 The MSG.
When you read this verse which words strike you first of all? Jot these down, they may be helpful in prayer later.
There would have been a time in my life when "prod and correct, Up on your feet," would have been the words to strike me and I would have tried my very best to "do or be better" and then fail repeatedly. There was something missing; "The people I love." I had missed the driving force behind this verse. God loves me! My Abba, Father loves me and any prodding and correcting came and comes out of His immense love for me. I can get "up on my feet" because of the love Jesus, God the Father and the Holy Spirit has out poured over me. I can choose to listen to the correction, turn to the cross, ask forgiveness, turn around(repent) and move on as if it had never happened. Yes, learn from it, but remember: Completely paid for! in full! There is no parent in the whole world who gives such perfect grace and mercy. No grudges held...isn't that amazing!! Freedom to run straight back to Him!
Action: Read the above verse putting your name in the first person, "(your name), I love you, I call you to account, out of my love I prod and correct and guide you so you can run at your best. Up on your feet, (your name), turn back and run after me." Notice the bits that are uncomfortable; the words you want to run away from. Bring those to God, talk to Him about these. He is longing to transform and free you.
Prayer: Lord, sometimes I find it so hard to receive and accept your love. I confess I sometimes see you as a taskmaster. I feel as if I have to keep on proving myself to you and living up to expectations you never placed on me. I know that you do have expectations, but only as I walk hand in hand with Christ and the power of the Spirit can these be reached. Let them be Your expectations; not those of my family, parents or even myself. Please help me find a way to walk in freedom in all of this with You, knowing Your love for, and acceptance of, me. I long to have a closer walk with You.
Challenge: God's Expectations:
Jesus said, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your passion and prayer and intelligence.’ This is the most important, the first on any list. But there is a second to set alongside it: ‘Love others as well as you love yourself.’ These two commands are pegs; everything in God’s Law and the Prophets hangs from them.” Matthew 22:37-40 The MSG
Many of us have a problem with the concept of loving ourselves. Over the years I have chosen to think of loving myself as receiving God's love for me, and matching my thoughts to His, concerning this. A thought to ponder: How much time do you think about yourself and satisfying your needs versus others? I know I am deeply humbled by this question. Now, no shame but just talk to God about it. I think we love ourselves far more than we think. I know that I need Jesus's life flowing through me to even begin to love in the way this verse describes.