Hello, Friends! How are things in your corners of the world? I returned from Colorado yesterday, totally wiped out from trying to keep up with 600 teenagers for six days, and from the 19-hour bus ride each way to and from Colorado. I think I have recovered somewhat. Still a little out of it.
The Lord had me in 1 John a lot this past week. I was asked sort of last minute to lead a segment of the concert of prayer at the conferencein Colorado. The theme was "God's Character," and I chose to focus on God's character of Love. 1 John gives such a clear message of God's love--the nature of it and its implications for us. How do we respond to God's love?
These verses in 1 John 2 were particularly challenging to me:
We know that we have come to know him if we obey his commands. The man who says, "I know him," but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But if anyone obeys his word, God's love is truly made complete in him. This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did. (vv.3-6).
Talk about a cold-water wake up call to the face!
We are marked as believers by the love of God dwelling in us, and the outward demonstration of this is obedience to God. Walking as Jesus did. We make claims all the time about having the Spirit of God in us, about having the love of God. I know I, for one, make such claims. But . . . walking as Jesus did? The NET Bible commentary explains what it means to "walk": That is, ought to behave in the same way Jesus did. “Walking” is a common NT idiom for one’s behavior or conduct.
I cannot quite claim that my behavior mirrors that of Christ on a regular basis, but I am encouraged by the reminder that "we have one who speaks to the Father in our defense—Jesus Christ, the Righteous One." I pray for us all this week that we would be led by Christ and that we would follow in His example. I pray that we would strive to live as He lived, and when we fall short, we would understand His grace.
Love you, sister-friends!
P.S. I will be leaving for NG on July 6! I'd rather keep my schedule on the DL so I can leave quietly without having to explain to people why I cannot see them before I leave, so please keep this info to yourself. Thanks!