Hurry Up and Wait!

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Originally posted September 24, 2008 on Facebook

“Patience with others is love. Patience with self is hope.
Patience with God is faith.” Adel Bestavros

“To put it in a nutshell, every sin is to be
traced back to impatience.” Tertullian (c. 160-225)

A man’s wisdom gives him patience;
it is to his glory to overlook an offense.
(Proverbs 19:11)

INTRODUCTION

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A Love That Surpasses All Knowledge

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Originally posted September 18, 2008 on Facebook

God has many attributes which are revealed in scripture. Likewise, there are many attributes of God’s love. After all, God is love, and he has many attributes. We can not ignore one attribute to the benefit of another or stress one to the detriment of the other, but at his very nature, “God is Love.” Love is often cited as an attribute of God, but it is so much more than just that. I like the quote from the article Definitions of Doctrine:

“Without love His justice would cut us off; His holiness would put us out of His sight; and His power would destroy us.” Love is the one hope of sinners, and our great concern should be to discover God’s love to us. The love that bought us also sought us and brought us to the place of safety.”

When talking about the attributes of God’s love, I think it’s important to keep in mind some frame work of the type of love we are talking about. I like this summary from the article, “How Has God Loved Us?” which calls us to remember that:

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The Flow of Love

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Originally posted September 10, 2008 on Facebook

It has been written that “Love is an unconditional commitment to an imperfect person.” (Thoughts for Those in Troubled Marriages. Marriage Missions. Steve & Cindy Wright. 7/14/2006) Anyone who has ever tried to practice true biblical love can confirm the truth of that statement.

Before we jump right into an in depth study of the characteristics of love, I thought it might be worthwhile to step back and ask a more fundamental question. What causes love? Where does it come from? Let’s start by having a look at love in the context of its source and its flow.

In order to understand love, we must first understand the flow of love – where it comes from, how it starts, how it flows, and what we’re to do with it. Let’s begin with the fundamentals of what love is or more precisely, what God is.

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What does love have to do with Marriage?

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Originally posted September 3, 2008 on Facebook

There is a verse in the Bible that virtually everyone knows – if not verbatim, at least they would recognize it when they heard it. Next to John 3:16, it is perhaps the best known verse in the Bible. It reads as follows:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres. Love never fails. [1 Corinthians 13:4-8]

It is read at weddings every day in this country. It was read at my wedding almost nine years ago despite the fact that, at the time, I had no relationship with my Lord and Savior. Perhaps there is too much familiarity with the verse. So much so that sometimes we don’t take the time to step back and think about the truth and importance of that verse. That’s what I hope to do in this posting and future postings. I want to take some time to look at each characteristic of love reflected in this verse and understand the importance and application of each.

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What is the big deal with contentment?

Originally posted August 5, 2008 on Facebook

Someone asked me how I felt the other day, and my answer was “content.” I’m paraphrasing, but the reply to my statement was something like “sorry to hear that.” We went on to discuss that I felt like “content” was a good thing and a great way to feel. On the other hand, their impression was that “content” has a negative connotation, and that someone who was “just content” should strive towards something better. That got me thinking about what it really means to be content.

What is the source of contentment in our lives? Many people search all kinds of areas for contentment….other people, relationships, kids, money, alcohol, drugs, causes, things, etc. You name it, and people try to use it to find contentment. The problem is that as soon as we get to a point that seems like contentment with one thing, some other desire or perceived need arises and we become discontent all over again.

We live in a culture built around discontentment. Look at any advertisement on television. The basic premise is that you should not be happy with what you have, and the next thing you buy will bring that happiness and contentment. Ironically, that next always happens to be the thing that’s being advertised. One more new thing, and you will be happy! We have grown up in, and live in, a culture which is discontent at its very core. We seek contentment everywhere we never truly find it because we neglect the source of true contentment. I believe the high divorce rate in our culture is a glaring example of how we have built a culture of discontentment. Rather than “rejoicing in the wife of our youth,” so many become discontent and convince themselves that they can do better the next time. The increased divorce rates for subsequent marriages, though, indicates that this is not the case.

So, where do we find true contentment? We find it only in God. He is the only thing in life which can give us true contentment. The great thing about the contentment that we find with God is that it spreads to other areas of our lives. It is unrealistic to think to something we buy can make us truly happy and content. Only the maker of those things holds that power in his hands. It is unfair to expect that another person can bring us that contentment. Only the creator of that person holds that gift. True contentment in our lives can only come from our Lord and Savior.

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