Thank you so much for SHOUTING your disapproval and disagreements on social media and blog comments. You’ve convinced me how much I really need to know your Jesus.
Said no one ever!
So many of those disagreements have to do with the things we consider moral and immoral, right and wrong, good and bad … you know the things we call the law!
There is an account in Scripture where Jesus addresses the subject with an “expert in religious law”…
Jesus asked, “What does the law of Moses say? How do you read it?” And the expert answered…
“‘You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind.’ And, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”Luke 10:27
And Jesus said, “Right!”
He didn’t correct the man or remind him of that well-known list of shalts and shalt nots. Jesus agreed that love is the way to sum up the message of that law. It’s interesting to note that love is also the message of grace.
If love is the message of the law and the gospel … I can’t help but question how well we’re sharing the message when I read through finger pointing posts and contentious discussions on social media.
So today, I’m praying about ways we might do a better job of sharing God’s love … not by telling people they’re wrong but by showing them through our kindness and compassion how God’s amazing grace and love is able to transform lives. By telling our own transformation stories.
I’d love for you to pray with me…
5 Verses to Pray Before You Tell Your Story
Father, I want to live for Your glory! I want to tell people about Your amazing grace, mercy, and love. I want to show them Your love. Please help me.
The man who had been freed from the demons begged to go with Him. But Jesus sent him home, saying, “No, go back to your family, and tell them everything God has done for you.” So he went all through the town proclaiming the great things Jesus had done for him.Luke 8:38–39
Father, I was a broken mess and You delivered me. I am overwhelmed by Your grace and mercy. What a blessing to know Your perfect unfailing love covers me. How I want everyone to know the hope and joy only You can give. Please fill my heart with love and help me to go and tell all the “great things” You have done for me in and through Jesus.
You must worship Christ as Lord of your life. And if someone asks about your hope as a believer, always be ready to explain it.But do this in a gentle and respectful way.1 Peter 3:15–16a
Father, Give me a heart of gratitude and worship. Make me mindful of all the blessings I have as Your child. And through Your Spirit, help me tell my story with gentleness and respect. Help me remember that I don’t have to be “right” because I know and love the One who IS RIGHT! Help me humbly remember that it is not my job to change hearts and minds … You do that. I just need to “always be ready” to tell my story of faith and hope.
“You are the light of the world—like a city on a hilltop that cannot be hidden. No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father.Matthew 5:14–16
Father, I am so aware of my weaknesses and faults. Please forgive me for the countless times I fail to shine for Your glory. You have given me an amazing light-filled story to share. A story of the transforming power of Your love. A story of fear to faith, doubt to hope, and anxiety to peace. A story that knows Your grace really is sufficient. Help me shine … not so people will see me but so people will see You.
“Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me. Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing.”John 15:4–5
Jesus, please hold me close. Help me remain in You, producing fruit for Your glory. You said that I will “remain in You” when Your words remain within me. Then … You invited me to ASK! So, I’m asking today that You will help me make knowing Your Word and prayer a priority in my life. Please help me love You, Lord, with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength … and help me love my neighbor as You want.
So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”John 13:34–35
Jesus, You made it known it is our love that will show the world we belong to You. Forgive me. Too often, I have failed to love because I’ve been quick to criticize and judge. Forgive me. Too often, I’ve expected people to clean up and conform before I’ve accepted and loved them. Forgive me. Too often, I’ve refused to listen with love and compassion. Please help me love as You love. Make me humble and caring. Help me bear the fruit of joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Help me love! That the world may know You! Amen.
Always be prepared to tell your story.
Friend, I believe that by God’s grace we can do this … maybe not perfectly but certainly better. We can tell our stories of God’s grace with gentleness and respect. And with His help, you and I can love each other in ways that show changed lives for God’s glory.
One more thing…
I am not throwing out the Commandments nor am I saying the Law no longer matters. What I am saying is that Jesus Himself said that the list of rules we love to wave like a banner is about unselfishly loving God and loving others. It doesn’t throw them out … it’s just a better way of looking at them.
Here are a couple of articles I received this week that I believe speak to this…
Today’s Apostasy by Billy Graham, Decision Magazine
A Divided American – 3 Responses for Christians by Ronnie W. Floyd, National Day of Prayer Website
Thank you so much for joining me today.
And a thank you to BibleGateway.com for sources.
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