A Love that is Worth the Cost
“This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.
And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.”
1 John 3:16 (NIV)
From the end of March until the end of April, my family spends almost every weekend in some sort of celebratory activity – either celebrating birthdays or anniversaries. We begin with my dad’s birthday and end celebrating my parent’s anniversary with my Mom, brother and husband’s birthdays scattered in between.
However last year, just as March was ending and our month long celebration was beginning, we received news that completely shook the foundation of our family. As we sat wrapping up Dad’s birthday, we were discussing the details of the next event when my brother and his wife made an announcement.
Through complete heartache and tears, they announced their decision to separate. The underlying factor … “No matter how hard I try I can’t make him/her happy, and we just want each other to be happy.”
Oh how many people stop right there – defeated by circumstances and human weaknesses.
Jesus tells us that the greatest of the commandments is this … TO LOVE!
“AND YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.’ “The second is this, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” Mark 12:28-31 (NASB)
We are commanded to love God first – with all our hearts, all our soul, all our mind and with all our strength. To love God first means to lay aside entitlement. To lay aside the notion that we deserve anything better than that which the Son of God endured.
We are a self-serving society on a mission. We are in desperate pursuit for the next best thing – that which promises pleasure, happiness and security; yet all the while ignoring our responsibilities to God, to our family, to the church, and to our country.
We are proving more and more to be a society who is willing to sacrifice our very souls in order to gain something that will not survive … something that will not endure … something that will leave us wanting when the situation becomes less than ideal.
When we accept this fact and surrender our selfish ways, in order to submit to loving God as perfectly as we can, it’s then and only then, we can accomplish loving our neighbor as we love ourselves. But we cannot do this if our eyes are fixed on self and our thoughts are focused on “me”.
Is it possible to love God first? To consider others over ourselves? To sacrifice “Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness”? To surrender and submit to the One and Only God, and therefore … an individual – our neighbor … regardless of the cost to self?
Father thank You that what occurred on March 26, 2012 that which Satan meant for evil You meant it for good. It’s been a little over a year now, and my family has been witness to the saving grace and amazing love of Jesus Christ. Father, You have proven You are still in the saving business – both of souls and of marriages. Even now my spirit, Your Spirit sings, as I think about their new union with You and their reunion together. Father, protect it! Lord, help us always to remember that You are faithful in Your promises to those that LOVE YOU and KEEP YOUR COMMANDMENTS. For it’s in Jesus name I pray, Amen!
A Little Extra Encouragement:
- You are faithful in Your promises to those that LOVE YOU and KEEP YOUR COMMANDMENTS. Deuteronomy 7:9
- To love God first means to lay aside the notion that we deserve anything better than that which the Son of God endured. Mark 12:28-31
- “Greater love has no one than this, that One lay down His life for His friends.” John 15:13
Categories: Becoming Christlike
Tags: 1 John 3:16, broken promises, defeated, Deuteronomy 7:9, diviorce, enduring life, heartache and tears, Heartbroken, John 15:13, Mark 12:28-31, meaningful relationships, needing strength, out of options, scott and nell A Love that is Worth the Cost, self-serving, weaknesses