Thursday, 28 October 2010

Do you love me?

This morning as I spent time in God's presence and worshipped Him, acknowledging and confessing His greatness and love, I was arrested as I believe the Lord asked me,

"Do you love me?"

A little surprised by the question, I began to reflect on the question. As I did so, I was reminded of the same question posed by Jesus to Peter in John 21:15-17.

"Do you truly love me?" Jesus asks. Like Peter I was quick to answer, "Yes, of course I love you!" but I realised that Jesus was after something.

God wants my whole heart!

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart.." it says in Matthew 22:37 and the Lord reprimands those who worship Him without their hearts: "These people honour me with their lips but their hearts are far from me" Matthew 15:8.

To worship God is to love Him.

God wants my heart and not just my confession of truth. He wants my emotions! "..draw near to God with a sincere heart.." Hebrews 10:22

To worship God is to worship God in spirit and in truth, by His Spirit and with a sincere heart, full of love for Him (see John 4:22-24).

Could it be that believers have suppressed emotions for fear of lack of "self-control," thinking that it is spiritual not to express emotions?

When Paul describes the fruit of the Spirit in Gal. 5, he is talking about the evidence manifested by those who walk according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh or old nature. "Self-control" is listed as one of the manifestations. In the context, it is clear that Paul is talking about the believer's control over the old nature (the lust of the flesh and self-centredness) and not about controlling one's emotions! Believers confuse self-control with being composed and orderly. How tragic!

If God lavishes His love on us, why shouldn't we lavish our love on Him?
Are we not to imitate Him?

(See John 13:1; 1 John 3:1; Rom. 5:5; Eph. 3:14-19; 5:1)

"We love because he first loved us" (1 John 4:19). I believe the quality of our love for God is proportional to the love we receive from Him (See Eph. 5:1).

Our hearts are softened as we reflect on God's love for us and we trust in Him. Unbelief and hardness of heart go hand in hand just as faith and love go hand in hand (See Heb. 4:7).

How is your heart today? Is it hard and distant or soft and near?

Draw near to God with a sincere heart and tell Him how much you love Him and what He means to you! Allow God to touch your emotions and don't be afraid of what He does to your heart! Keep your focus on Him and avoid introspection but let Him in!


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