First Love

But I have this against you that you have abandoned the love you had at first.   Revelation 2:4

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As Jesus spoke to the church in Ephesus He began by listing all the great things about them. They had been faithful, worked hard, held up under persecution and had stayed away from false teachers. Sounds like the best church in town! But then Jesus brings up the burden of His heart; they have left their first love for Him. It might seem as if He was being hard on them, but the Bible tells us that the church is the bride of Jesus Christ. He is the bridegroom, waiting at the altar in heaven, with His eyes focused on us. He has loved us and given us his very own life so we can live with Him forever. In His heart is a longing to be with His bride but when He looks down He sees something changing. His bride’s heart that once longed to run to spend time in His presence is now very busy. She still thinks from time to time of Jesus, but she is also quite involved in a lot of other things. Everything seems so important that soon her schedule is so full that there are only a few moments left for Jesus.

Then He looks and sees His people not only too busy for Him, but also too busy to bother much about telling others about their need for Him. His heart is longing to see us again totally living for him. What will it take for us to go back to our first love? How will we ever return to where we once were? Jesus tells us clearly. He does not say; “Feel really bad and cry and pray.” He does not add, “Give some more money to the church.” He doesn’t even say, “Go out and start feeding folks at the soup kitchen.”  All of those things are only a pale substitute for the “First Love” that Jesus has in mind.

WWJCA (What would Jesus Care About)

With all the emotions running wild after this election I paused today to ask myself, “What would Jesus care about?”

Here are my favorite four. Let me know if you have any other ideas!

A) Love God with all your heart,mind  soul and strength Mark 12:30

When God becomes the center of who we are we stay in the exact orbit that He has designed. Hurtling aimlessly through space is not freedom it is just wandering alone or as Bob Dylan said, “no direction home.”

B) Love your neighbor Luke 10:27

Once God replaces us on the throne of our life then loving our neighbors gets a lot easier to do. Love is much more than a reasonable action, it becomes a part of our life in Christ. Jesus never had to stop and decide if He could love someone. Jesus Christ simply was moved with compassion because of who He was, not because of who He was with.

C) Take up the Cross and follow Christ

Matthew 10:38 As disciples of Jesus taking our cross was never presented as an option. It is not like in the car showroom where only some things come standard. Following Jesus means going where He went. Our true life is hidden with Christ in God. To discover life’s design means an intimate relationship with the designer: “the fellowship of His suffering”

D) Go and make disciples of all nations Matthew 28:19

When we focus on what Jesus has called us to do we will find that we have a lot less time to fuss about what others are not doing. We can do all things through He who strengthens me, but without Him we can do nothing. So let’s patiently, determinedly and lovingly run the race that God has chosen. The days ahead will be hard and sometimes confusing but He has promised to be with us even to the end of the world. Now is the time for genuinely sharing the love of God.

More about Jesus would I know

More of His love to others show

More of His saving fullness see

More of His love who died for me!

 Eliza Hewitt