Today we will continue our series entitled “God’s Grace & Our Faith.” For the past few days, we looked at John 1:14&17 and Galatians 5:6. I recently added Ephesians 3:16-20 and today we will add 1 John 4:13-16 and two more passages in John as we continue to flow in this vein.
(John 1:14 NIV)
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
(Jon 1:17 NIV)
For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.
(Galatians 5:6 KJV)
For in Jesus Christ neither circumcision availeth anything, nor uncircumcision; but faith which worketh by love.
(Ephesians 3:16-20 TPT)
16 And I pray that he would unveil within you the unlimited riches of his glory and favor until supernatural strength floods your innermost being with his divine might and explosive power.
17 Then, by constantly using your faith, the life of Christ will be released deep inside you, and the resting place of his love will become the very source and root of your life.
18–19 Then you will be empowered to discover what every holy one experiences—the great magnitude of the astonishing love of Christ in all its dimensions. How deeply intimate and far-reaching is his love! How enduring and inclusive it is! Endless love beyond measurement that transcends our understanding—this extravagant love pours into you until you are filled to overflowing with the fullness of God!
20 Never doubt God’s mighty power to work in you and accomplish all this. He will achieve infinitely more than your greatest request, your most unbelievable dream, and exceed your wildest imagination! He will outdo them all, for his miraculous power constantly energizes you.
(1 John 4:13-16 ERV)
16 So we know the love that God has for us, and we trust that love. God is love. Everyone who lives in love lives in God, and God lives in them.
(John 13:34, 35 NLT)
“So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”
(John 15:12 NLT)
“This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.”
So what does this mean for you today? A few things.
1. If you ever get to the point where you fully embrace the love of God, it will change you forever.
— I have been driving home the point that God is perfect, and we are not. It is hard enough for many humans to believe that a perfect God would want to reside inside imperfect people. But if we can ever get to the point where we believe the love God has for us, God’s love will change us from the inside out.
— In 1 John 4, the Apostle John tells us plainly that God sent His Son Jesus to the earth to be the Savior of the world. He tells us that those who believe in Jesus have God’s Son living on the inside of them. We get to experience God daily through the Holy Spirit. John then makes it clear that none of this happens because we are so good. This only happens because God is good. After all, God loves us, and He loved us before we loved Him. For all of this to make sense, John tells us that we have to get to the point where we know and BELIEVE the love God has for us, and once we believe it, we must learn to trust God’s love.
— If you can BELIEVE and TRUST God’s love, you will be able to live the life of faith, and your faith will tap into God’s grace.
— Believing and trusting God’s love are both required. When you believe in the love of God, you believe God (who is perfect) loves you despite your imperfections. When you trust the love of God, you are empowered to attempt things you know you are clearly unqualified for, but you trust the divine impulses of the Holy Spirit enough (trusting that God only has your best interest at heart) that you attempt what He leads you to do, even at the risk of looking foolish, and you attempt these things by faith.
— To live the way I am describing, you must be open to truly walking with God every day. You must yearn for an intimate relationship with God. You cannot just know God from a book. You have to know God through experiences. The more you walk with God in true fellowship, the more His love will fill your heart and mind. Said another way, the more you know God, the more you will know His love because God IS love.
— My prayer for you is that you open your heart to the love of God and that you get to the point where you believe God loves you and trust in that love enough to attempt whatever HE leads you to do. Once you are there, Paul says, “the resting place of his love will become the very source and root of your life.”
2. Once the love of God changes you, you will find that it will change others THROUGH you!
— Once you get to the point where you know, believe, and trust in the love God has for you, you are then in a position to become a conduit of God’s love in this world. This is the ultimate goal.
— God does not just want to change you. He wants to make you an agent of supernatural change on this planet. God first produces change IN you, and He then seeks to produce change THROUGH you.
— While part of your journey is seeking God for yourself. A major part of your journey is evangelism. Part of your purpose is to help direct others to their purpose.
— Part of your receiving, believing, and being transformed by the love of God is you allowing the love of God to flow through you so that it can change others.
— The more you walk with God, the more you will realize the greater purpose of your life and the greater impact God wants to make in this world through you. At that point, the less your life will be about you and your selfish desires.
— When you truly die to self, your life becomes an offering. You are able to give your life to God (all of it), and God is then able to pour your life into the lives of others.
— One of the most rewarding aspects of my life and my walk with God is not about me, what I want from God, or God answering my prayers. Honestly, the most rewarding part of my life is during those moments when I know I am being used by God TO BE a blessing to someone else. I am sure Isabella can say the same. Seeking God for whatever we need is okay, and believe me, Isabella and I are blessed. We are already living beyond anything we dreamed of as children. But my point is that our lives have become full of something we never expected. Initially, when we were married, we sought God for US! We wanted to know who we were (in God’s sight), and we had desires, hopes, and dreams as a young couple. We asked God for this and that. But once we got past all that and we realized that a lot of our prayers were selfish, we are now in a position to do whatever God leads us to do. At this point, a major part of our lives is dedicated to others. I believe this to be the heart of God.
— There are only two things the Bible says God is. God is light, and in Him, there is no darkness at all. And God is love. I could say that in Him, there is no hate at all. But there are things God hates. Further, the opposite of love is not hate. In God’s eyes, the opposite of love is selfishness. In God, there is no selfishness at all. God’s love is always focused on someone else! God’s love is always giving. So the more you open your heart to the love of God, the more you will become passionate about BEING a blessing to others!
3. The love of God will help get you past yourself, so your life can become focused on something that is bigger than you!
— The initial goal is for you to fellowship with God. But once your fellowship with God is solid, God sends you out to fellowship with others so He can reach the world through you.
— Get over the fact that you are not perfect, embrace the fact that God loves you anyway. Once you do, you can open your heart to be used by God to change the world. At this point, you will not be hung up on people’s hangups because you know that God is not hung up on yours.
— If you truly fellowship with God, you won’t have to TRY to make others notice the God in you. It will be natural. People will see God in your daily routine. People will experience God in your normal interactions with them. You don’t have to force anything to happen. If God lives in you and you yield to Him because you know He loves, the same love will flow through you naturally.
— People will hear God in the way you talk. They will feel God’s presence when they are in your presence. They will experience His love when you hang out with them. They will see Jesus in you, all because you opened your heart to God’s love, and you embraced it.
— Hurt people hurt people, and loved people love people. Be the latter and not the former.
— When someone does something wrong to you, YOUR FLESH may want to RESPOND and REACT a certain way. But if you are full of God’s love and you are RESTING in His love, you will hear God’s Spirit, and you will not respond the way this world does. Paul said, “If you are led of God’s Spirit, you will NOT fulfill the DESIRES of the flesh” (Gal 5:18).
— The Holy Spirit will lead you to RESPOND and REACT in ways that don’t always make sense in this world. Why? Because God is love! His love has come TO you. Now God wants to flow His love through you.
— This world is full of darkness and selfishness. I pray you allow yourself to become a conduit of God’s light and love in this world.
— When you are resting in God’s love, you will have unshakable peace, undistractable focus, and unbreakable resolve. You will be so focused on God and His love that setbacks, attacks, and disappointments will not move you! I pray you learn to rest in God’s love.
— Part of the life is faith is not just believing God for you and your family. Part of the life of faith is opening your heart to the point where God can use you as a conduit of His light and His love in this world. So faith works by love, yes. But this faith cannot just be for you and your desires. As you die to self and embrace the love of God, you will develop the heart of God. And the heart of God is to see the lost saved. God wants to see broken relationships restored, broken communities repaired, dead dreams revived, and wayward lives corrected. So while I keep driving home the importance of you opening your heart to God’s love so your faith can work by love, part of that faith will be directed towards making an impact in this world!
— God is too big of a God, and your purpose is too big of an assignment for God to JUST be focused on you and your family. God wants to use you as a change agent within your sphere of influence. Stop fighting it. When you fully embrace God’s love, you will open your heart to do whatever He leads you to do, and you will find that He desires to impact the lives of those around you.
That’s enough for today.
Declaration of Faith:
Father, I know, believe, and trust the love You have for me. You are love. I am IN You. You are IN me. Love lives inside of me. I believe and receive Your love. Your love has changed me from the inside out.
By faith, I declare that the people I deal with every day will experience You as they deal with me. I am an agent of supernatural change within my sphere of influence. I am an atmosphere setter. Environments change for the better when I walk into them because I am a child of the Most-High God.
I know who I am. I know whose I am. I know what I am called to do. I have strong faith because my faith is rooted and grounded in Your love for me. Therefore, my community is impacted positively by the anointing on my life. Every meeting, conversation, and activity I engage in is influenced by the Holy Spirit in me.
You use me, Father, as an Ambassador of Your Kingdom and a minister of reconciliation. Through me, souls are saved, burdens are removed, yokes are destroyed, and lives are changed forever. Not because I am so good, but because You are. Not by my power, but by Your grace! I simply LIVE as a person who walks with You and who rests in Your love. Living this way, I know GREATER IS COMING FOR ME! I declare this by faith. In Jesus’ name, Amen!
This is Today’s Word! Apply it and Prosper.