1 John 4:19
We love because he first loved us.
God loves everything about us because we are His perfect creation. We are born with His gift to love in our hearts.
God lights the flame that is the love in our heart for Him, and that flame burns warmly, casting love upon others. You feel that warmth when you do good things for others, when you pour out your love for someone who is struggling, when you make a simple and random act of kindness. Communicating with God, sharing His love, and letting Him and others know you love them keeps that flame alive. If you don’t fuel the fire by sharing God’s love, and if you don’t love yourself, like glowing embers, your flame becomes weak. But with a breath of air and some fuel for the fire, it will burn again.
In this letter Apostle John clarifies that we are only able to love because God loved us first. This love cannot be for self, nor can it only be shared with God — it must be shared with others. People will know we are Christians by our love and what we do for others – our actions should speak our love louder than our words. We need to remember that our world would not have love, were it not for God and His love for us. We cannot say we love God and hate others, as our life and the lives of others are sustained by God’s love for all of His children. Love is a blessing and a gift that shouldn’t stay boxed up on a shelf, but rather used and given to others every single day. When we share the gift that He has given us, when we love our neighbors as ourselves, and when we are in a loving relationship with Him, we do not need to fear God’s judgment.
How are you sharing God’s gift of love? How do you encourage yourself to see others as God sees them? How do you learn from God’s love to be His disciple? How are you feeding the fire of His love in your heart?
Heavenly Father, Thank You for loving me before I was even born. Your unfailing love supports me, overwhelms me, and gives me the strength I need to love myself and others. Help me to keep the flame of love You lit in my heart alive and burning strongly. I pray that others see Your love through my actions, heart, and understanding, and that I can pass the flame of Your love to them. Your love is the foundation for discipleship, help me to build upon that while sharing Your love. In Your name I pray, Amen.
Submitted by: Anne Beihoffer