Prayer and Meditation
The greatest of these is love,
1 Corinthians 13:13
The greatest of these is love,
1 Corinthians 13:13
The tears of Christ are the pity of God. The gentleness of Jesus is the long-suffering of God. The tenderness of Jesus is the Love of God. He that hath seen Me hath seen the Father"
Have you ever wondered why God is so interested in us out of all His creation?
Have you ever stopped and thought about why He treats us with such esteem despite our wicked and weak nature? And why He loves us and continues to seek us even when we turn our backs on Him or hide from His presence?
Have you ever wondered why God continues to care for us and answer our prayers even when most of the times we are so proud to claim credit for our talents and accomplishments that we forget to thank Him and give back the glory which is really due Him?
These are the questions that I had as I listened to Laura Story's song entitled Grace. After I learned the song, I would sing it almost every night and contemplate on its lyrics especially the chorus part - the conversation between man and God:
"I ask You how many times will You pick me up, when I keep on letting You down? And each time I will fall short of Your glory, how far will forgiveness abound?"
I am reminded of my weak human nature and I feel the guilt of my sinfulness, my stubbornness - how can I be so hard-headed that I keep on sinning against my God? And yet every time I fall down, He never fails to extend His hand to help me up, to encourage me to try again?
"And You answered, 'My child, I love you and as long as you're seeking My face, you'll walk in the power of My daily sufficient Grace'."
I realized that God loves me despite my sinfulness, my human weakness, my inability to resist sin and temptation. As I revel at the lyrics of this song, I still could not comprehend how God can be so mindful of me despite my insignificance - I am a mere human being and God does not even need me, yet He created me in His image and gave me a crown of glory and honour and made a little lower than angels and put me in charge of all His creation! (See Psalm 8:4-6)
I am nothing without Him and He will still be God without me yet He cares for me as if I am the most important thing in the world? Why? Because He loves me! And He will continue to pour upon me His grace as a sign of His love for me - like the doting father of the prodigal son, God will continue to wait for my return and will always welcome me back with open arms - all I need to do is turn from my old ways and run back to Him!
Maybe some of us are wondering why in spite of the fact that we have good speakers and leaders, the community is still not growing as it should be. We try to justify that community growth is not based on quantity but on quality. We sometimes forget that quantity is the product of quality.
The big question or challenge is, "Are we really building a Christian Community or just a group?" If we go back to the time of early Christians which we can read on Acts 2: 42-47, we will note how deep and strong the love of every member for one another was. They did not consider what they have as their own but for everyone in the community.
A Christian Community should be a place of love, hope, peace, joy and healing. Everyone should be an instrument of love, more so, a blessing and inspiration to one another. Everybody should speak, act, and work for the salvation of every member. It should not be a place of intrigue, gossip, judgment and condemnation.
We need to TRUST one another as God trusted us so much. We need to understand that we have different levels of spirituality. Our weakness can be the strength of others and their weakness can be our strength. Although our goal is to be perfect, we cannot be, for only God is perfect. Let us accept the truth that we need one another. Let us support the strength of others and help them on their weaknesses. Let us be humble also to accept the truth that we need the help of others to overcome our weaknesses.
False spirituality is when we become self-righteous as if we are the only ones who are good. True spirituality is when love, patience, understanding, and forgiveness go wider. When we learn to accept the strength and weakness of others and accept our own weaknesses, too.
We need to move forward from the emotional level of love to the spiritual level of love. Emotional level of love focuses so much on feelings, emotions and expectations. If this is not satisfied, it leads to frustration and condemnation. Spiritual level of love is to love like Christ, to understand that we need one another. We need to trust the goodness of the person. Let us not forget that whatever and no matter how big the sin of a person is, God is still doing everything for his salvation, as what He is doing for us, up to the point that He even gave His only begotten Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, to save us. Do not act the other way around, for we have no right to destroy what God is trying to save.
Let us always remember that we are all so precious to God and the value of each one of us is Jesus Himself on the Cross.
Christian Community should be Christ - Love driven!
Bro. Don Quilao