Monday, March 06, 2017

March 6, 2017 ... Real Love Is Jesus

Berry Patch Devotions in 2017 - Day 65 

Devotional Song:  … GO TO THIS LINK …  Please take the time to take in a YouTube video of lyrics from The Judds singing their song … Love Can Build A Bridge … poignantly singing of the power of God’s love, expressed in our lives, to build bridges between broken people.


Highlight Verse[s]: 1st Corinthians 13:7 [NLT] … 
7 Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance. … What real love is all about.
Highlight Passage [context]: 1st Corinthians 13:4-8 [NLT] … USE THIS LINK
… God, thru Paul, teaches on perfected love.

Reference Passage #1 [NKJV] : … John 13:34-35 [NLT] … USE THIS LINK
… Jesus calls all His disciples (you and me) to show His kind of love to others.

Reference Passage #2 [NKJV] : … John 14:21 [NLT] … 
21 Those who accept my commandments and obey them are the ones who love me. And because they love me, my Father will love them. And I will love them and reveal myself to each of them.” 
… When we’re truly Jesus' disciples and are obedient to His word, we can show the love He manifests in/thru us.

Reference Passage #3 [NKJV] : … Acts 9:1-31 [NLT] … USE THIS LINK
… Paul’s conversion shows that when we surrender to Christ as Lord, He can transform even the most hateful humans into vessels of love.

My Devotional Journal: Today's ODB author, Poh Fang Chia, used a personal story to illustrate our human challenge to find/express the love of God to others. The ODB author wrote: Her voice shook as she shared the problems she was having with her daughter. Worried about her teenager’s questionable friends, this concerned mum confiscated her daughter’s mobile phone and chaperoned her everywhere. Their relationship seemed only to go from bad to worse. 
When I spoke with the daughter, I discovered that she loves her mum dearly but is suffocating under a smothering love. She longs to break free. As imperfect beings, we all struggle in our relationships. 
Whether we are a parent or child, single or married, we grapple with expressing love the right way, saying and doing the right thing at the right time. We grow in love throughout our lifetime. 

Real love, the Jesus kind of love, is tough, isn’t it? … In reality, … maybe it’s even impossible, … especially for us imperfect and sin-ridden people. But the Apostle Paul, in 1st Corinthians 13, the so-called “love chapter,” told his fellow Christians what that kind of love was (is). But as in the scenario above, we have trouble doing what the Judds sing about in today’s linked song, … i.e., building bridges between our imperfect hearts with the love of Christ.

But the Apostle Paul, as today’s OBD entry depicts, was a good example of the love Jesus was [and is] and what He called us to be. Paul, when he was Saul of Tarsus, was ridden with hate, doing all he could to have Christians killed. But after his conversion and surrender to Christ [see Acts 9], he became a man who could (and did) share the love of God and His gospel message with any/all he could.

Yes, as the Judd’s sing in the linked song, Jesus’ love can build bridges. But real love, as Charlie Brown expresses above, IS Jesus; … and only when we can be Jesus to others can we build bridges of love between us. How about we go out and build some bridges today?

My Prayer Today: Heavenly Father, … Lord, help me to be Your love when I encounter others today, … especially those who are difficult to love. … Amen

Blogger Note:  Everyday during this year, my daily devotional blogs are influenced by the reading and study of the online devotional blog entitled Our Daily Bread, distributed online via email by RBC Ministries.  If you GO TO THIS LINK on the date of my blog, you can read/study the ODB blogs; or you can subscribe to the blog via email at that site.

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