I Love You

Every time I breathe You seem a little bit closer
I never want to leave
I want to stay in Your warm embrace
Oh basking in the glory shining from Your face
And every time I get another glimpse of Your heart
I realize it’s true
That You are so marvelous God
And I am so in love with You
~Lyrics from Big Daddy Weave’s song Every Time I Breathe

Most mornings I wake up with a song in my heart and most days that song has something to do with how much I love God or how much He loves me. And I’m so grateful for that. It’s hard to wake up in a bad mood when the first thing I hear is a praise to the Creator of the Universe Who loves me!

This morning as I woke to this song by Big Daddy Weave, the more I heard it, the more I sang it, the more amazing it seemed that the King of the Universe loves me and that the Creator of the Universe desires to be loved by me.

My love means something to Him. How amazing is that? How awesome is that?

It reminded me of the time that my husband and I first began dating (in high school). I waited eagerly for his phone calls. When he was coming over to my house, I didn’t wait in the house, I waited outside so I could see his car coming down the street. If it was dark or raining, I sat at the window waiting for that first glimpse of his headlights coming around the curve. I was in love and I longed to be with the one I loved.

God loves me. He wants to spend time with me. Does He watch and wait for me? Is He watching and waiting for you?

He is Love. It’s not a human love. There is no selfishness in Him at all. But that doesn’t mean it doesn’t thrill His heart to spend time with you and to hear those three little words uttered from your mouth, “I love You”.

Arise, my love , my fair one, and come away…  my beloved shepherd said to me… while you are here… let me see your face, let me hear your voice; for your voice is sweet, and your face is lovely. (Song of Solomon 2:13,14; Amplified)

Do I take time to meet my Good Shepherd each day, letting Him tell me of His love, and cheering His heart with my interest in Him? (footnote to Song of Solomon 2:13 from the Amplified Bible)

Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore will I deliver him; I will set him on high… (Psalm 91:14, Amplified)

I love You Lord.

You’re My Inspiration

I was thinking about a word today, the word inspiration. I watch for it. I wait for it. I expect it. I don’t write just to write, I wait for that inspiration to write. And then it comes. A scripture, a word, a song and the floodgates are opened.

Today I was thinking about the inspiration to write. I was watching for it and 2 Timothy 3:16 came to mind.

All scripture is given by inspiration of God… (2 Timothy 3:16, KJV)

Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration)… (2 Timothy 3:16, Amplified)

I decided to look up the word inspiration in my Webster’s 1828 Dictionary. This is one of the definitions that I found.

The infusion of ideas into the mind by the Holy Spirit… (American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster 1828)

Wow! To be inspired by God!

Jesus told His disciples of the things that were to come, including their own arrests and He said to them,

But when they shall lead you, and deliver you up, take no thought beforehand what ye shall speak, neither do ye premeditate: but whatsoever shall be given you in that hour, that speak ye: for it is not ye that speak, but the Holy Ghost. (Mark 13:11, KJV)

He told them that the Holy Spirit would inspire them in what to speak. Jesus Himself watched for the inspiration to speak.

…I have never spoken on My own authority or of My own accord or as self-appointed, but the Father Who sent Me has Himself given Me orders [concerning] what to say and what to tell… So whatever I speak, I am saying [exactly] what My Father has told Me to say and in accordance with His instructions. (John 12:49, 50; Amplified)

When I stand before a group of people to teach from God’s Word, I watch for His words in my heart. When I sit down to write, I wait for His words to come. As I minister on healing and pray for the sick I watch for the words He would have me speak and pray. In a difficult situation, a take a moment to hear from Him before I speak. Jesus did the same and so much more. He watched for every word He spoke to be inspired by God.

God gave us some advice through James when he said, “…let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath” (James 1:19, KJV).

Yes, I believe that we should be slow to speak and quick to hear what others are saying. But more importantly, we should be slow to speak, as we watch for that inspiration from the Holy Spirit. Then we will speak a word in due season. We will speak words of wisdom, knowledge and prophecy inspired by the Holy Spirit. We will speak the Truth that sets the captives free.

Watch, listen, wait and then speak. Let Him be your inspiration!

I will… stand upon my post of observation and station myself on the tower… and will watch and see what He will say within me and what answer I will make [as His mouthpiece]… (Habakkuk 2:1, Amplified)

Time to Love

But the end of all things is at hand: be ye therefore sober, and watch unto prayer. And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. (1 Peter 4:7-8, KJV)

But the end and culmination of all things has now come near; keep sound minded and self-restrained and alert therefore for [the practice of] prayer. Above all things have intense and unfailing love for one another, for love covers a multitude of sins [forgives and disregards the offenses of others]. (1 Peter 4:7-8, Amplified)

Look at the first part of that scripture. Peter, the apostle, is speaking to these churches of the approach of the end of all things. In the Amplified it says “the end and culmination of all things”. This is not a light matter that he is writing to the church about. It is a matter that is very important to all. So he instructs them to be alert in prayer. How much more as the time draws even nearer, should we be watching and praying?

We have many prayer groups at our church that are watching and praying. I hear of the many prayer groups meeting in churches across the nation, even throughout the entire world. I myself have attended special times of prayer with intercessors from around the world who have gathered to pray. And pray we must. The time demands it!

Yet this scripture goes on to say, “above all things have intense and unfailing love for one another.” Above all things. I’m no Greek scholar, but I did look up the Greek words used for above all things and guess what I found. It means above all things. Yes pray, but it better be from a place of love and it most definitely can not be in place of walking in love. It’s time to pray and love!

So here, Peter is speaking to the church at a very critical time and he says, above everything else, above all other things love one another.

When is the time for the end of all things? No one knows for sure. Here, Peter told them it was at hand. We’ll it has been almost 2000 years since the time period when Peter may have written this. If the time was at hand then, it is much more at hand now. We are at least 1900 years closer. So if they had to watch and pray then. We ought to watch and pray now. And if they had to love one another above all else, how much more should we be doing that right now?

In many of my previous post I have said that now is the time to love as He loved. We all mean to. We are all working on it. But now is truly the time for the Body of Christ to take this seriously. As it says in 1 Corinthians 14:1 in The Message translation, “Go after a life of love as if your life depended on it…” It goes on to say, “because it does”.

It is time to love!

Resting in His Love

Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden light. (Matthew 11:30, KJV)

I give you you a new commandment: that you should love one another. Just as I have loved you, so you too should love one another. (John 13:34, Amplified)

When I hear a fellow Christian speak about just how difficult it is to love, it makes me cringe inside. My head wants to agree with them, but my heart won’t let me. And even deeper still, my spirit man knows it’s not true. Don’t get me wrong, I used to think and say the very same thing, but something changed. The way I think and the way a walk out this commandment has changed.

Jesus said, “My yoke is easy and my burden light.” How can that be? He also said that we would find rest for our souls. Let’s take a look at another scripture that speaks of rest.

For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it. For we which have believed do enter into rest… For he that is entered into his rest, he also hath ceased from his own works, as God did from his. (Hebrews 4:2,3,10; KJV)

There is a place of rest that has been made available to those who believe. This passage tells us that it takes faith to enter into this rest. Let’s take a look at two scriptures that speak to us about faith.

So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. (Romans 10:17, KJV)

Therefore it is of faith, that it might be by grace… (Romans 4:16, KJV)

It takes faith to enter the rest, and that faith comes by the hearing of the word of God. Faith is trusting, leaning and relying, wholly on God and His word. And once faith is put into operation, it accesses grace, which is the power of the Holy Spirit (James 4:6, Amplified)

When I used to try to walk this love walk out in my own will power, it was very hard. When I began leaning entirely on the grace of God to love, it seemed so easy. It wasn’t me trying to love any longer. It was me yielding to His love in me, His Spirit in me, His power in me. I’ve often described it as the Nestea plunge. How hard is that? The difficult part has always been to just let go.

We love because He first loved us. (1 John 4:19, ESV)

First and foremost develop your faith in the love of God. Read scriptures that speak of His love for you and think about them, meditate them, say them, feed on them. Read about His love for others. Think, breath, live on His unfailing love.

Second, develop your faith in the fact that He lives in you. His love is in you (Rom 5:5). His Spirit is in you (1 Cor 3:16). His fullness is in you (Col 2:9-10).

First believe and receive His love and then freely give what you have freely received. It’s that easy. Stop trying to love and rest in His love and let it carry you.

For in Him we live and move and have our being… (Acts 17:28, Amplified)

Prince of Peace

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. (Isaiah 26:3, KJV)

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you! (Isaiah 26:3, NLT)

I heard this scripture today and it so blessed me. A promise of peace, shalom. What is shalom? Billye Brim, who studied Hebrew in a language school in Israel says it is the peace that comes from being whole, nothing missing and nothing broken in any area of your life. Not just peace of mind, but the peace of mind that comes from the peace (completeness and wholeness, nothing missing and nothing broken) in your home, in your body, in your finances, in your family.

Let’s take a closer look at the words of this scripture. You will keep him in perfect peace. Who will keep him? God will keep him. The Creator of the Universe promises to keep him.

What does it mean to keep? From the Strong’s Concordance, this word keep means to guard, to watch, to watch over, to keep, to preserve, to guard from dangers.

One time I asked the Lord if we were supposed to stay in our home or sell it. There had been some pressure in trying to maintain it. His response to me was, “I will keep you in this house.” I knew from that answer that: 1) we were to stay in our home and; 2) that I didn’t have to worry about a thing, because He would keep us in this home. How? Didn’t matter. He would take care of it and He did. There is no longer any pressure from staying in this home. He saw to it like He said He would.

You will keep him. Him who? Him whose mind is stayed upon the Lord. He will keep the person whose thoughts are fixed upon Him. What are you fixing your thoughts on. What are you meditating on, thinking about as you lay on your bed at night?

My whole being shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness; and my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips: When I remember You upon my bed and meditate on You in the night watches. For You have been my help, and in the shadow of Your wings will I rejoice. (Psalm 63:5-7, Amplified)

What are you thinking about all day long? Fix your mind on Him. I once heard someone say that if your problem seems big, it’s because you don’t know how big your God is. All problems are small compared to Him.

You will keep him in perfect peace. The words translated as perfect and peace are both the Hebrew word shalom. Which means “completeness, soundness, welfare, peace, safety, soundness (in body), quiet, tranquility, contentment…”(Strong’s Concordance).

Because He trusteth in thee. Your thoughts of God should be thoughts that cause you to trust Him. Thoughts of His goodness, His mercy, His love, His faithfulness, His power, His ability and His promises.

Because of faith also Sarah herself received physical power to conceive a child, even when she was long past the age for it, because she considered [God] Who had given her the promise to be reliable and trustworthy and true to His word. (Hebrews 11:11, Amplified)

He is the God of Peace. Jesus is our Prince of Peace. God wanted peace in your relationship with Him and in every area of your life so much so, that He sent His Son.

…the chastisement [needful to obtain] peace and well-being for us was upon Him… (Isaiah 53:5, Amplified)

Today let Him be your God of Peace. Let Jesus be your Prince of Peace. Fix your mind on Him. Trust Him with all that is going on in your life and let Him bring peace (completeness and wholeness) to every area in your life… to every situation you face.

Now may the God of peace [Who is the Author and the Giver of peace]… strengthen (complete, perfect) and make you what you ought to be and equip you with everything good that you may carry out His will; [while He Himself] works in you and accomplishes that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ (the Messiah); to Whom be the glory forever and ever… Amen. (Hebrews 13:20, 21; Amplified)

His Mercy Endures Forever

And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not.

So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.

When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee? She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more. (John 8:3-11, KJV)

What a lesson in humility. What a lesson in mercy. The Bible tells us that we are to follow the example of Christ, becoming more and more like Him everyday. Here we see what He is like when someone is caught in sin. And a sin that is considered quite serious even in our time, but more so in His time.

He judged the sin as wrong. He told her to sin no more. But He didn’t reject or condemn the person.

For God did not send the Son into the world in order to judge (to reject, to condemn, to pass sentence on) the world, but that the world might find salvation and be made safe and sound through Him. (John 3:17, Amplified)

These days, it seems that so many are quick to judge, reject, and condemn others. We practice it everyday. Think about the politician, the newsman, the bad driver on the freeway, maybe even your spouse or your kids.

We may not agree with them. We may believe and rightly so that their words or actions are wrong, but we have not been sent to reject them or condemn them. We have been sent to love them. We have been sent as His ambassadors… ambassadors of His love and His mercy.

Here Jesus said to this woman’s accusers, you who is without sin throw the first stone. And not one was left behind. We had all sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Not one of us was guiltless. But because of His great love and mercy He died for us while we were yet sinners. And it is only the mercy and grace of God that we are now guiltless and sin free before Him.

The next time you see someone fall to sin, search your heart for God’s leading. How would He have you to help them. He would rather your pray for them than to complain about them or reject them. He would rather you be part of the answer for that person rather than being part of the problem.

Carrie Prejean has been an excellent example of this. She spoke out against sin, but she has not spoken out against any person even when they have attacked her. She too was not without sin. She too needed a Savior. And she is now demonstrating His gracious Spirit, His love and His mercy. Pray for those who persecute you. (Matthew 5:44)

Bless them which persecute you: bless, and curse not. (Romans 12:14, KJV)

…through Jesus Christ reconciled us to Himself [received us into favor, brought us into harmony with Himself] and gave to us the ministry of reconciliation [that by word and deed we might aim to bring others into harmony with Him]. It was God… in Christ, reconciling and restoring the world to favor with Himself, not counting up and holding against [men] their trespasses [but cancelling them], and committing to us the message of reconciliation (of the restoration to favor).

So we are Christ’s ambassadors, God making His appeal as it were through us. We [as Christ’s personal representatives] beg you for His sake to lay hold of the divine favor [now offered you] and be reconciled to God. For our sake He made Christ [virtually] to be sin Who knew no sin, so that in and through Him we might become… the righteousness of God. (2 Corinthians 5:18-21, Amplified)

Freely you have received, freely give. (Matthew 10:8, NKJV)

…For He is good, for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever… (2 Chronicles 5:13, Amplified)

Higher Ground

God said, Do not come near; put your shoes off your feet, for the place on which you stand is holy ground. (Exodus 3:5, KJV)

…Be ye holy; for I am holy. (1 Peter 1:16, KJV)

AND HE said unto Moses, Come up unto the LORD… (Exodus 24:1, KJV)

…And yet I will show you a still more excellent way [one that is better by far and the highest of them all–love]. (1 Corinthians 12:31, Amplified)

At first glance, these may appear to be a few random scriptures. But as I woke up this morning, they were all speaking to me. “It’s time to come up. It’s time to be holy. It’s time to love.”

The song, Holy Ground, was rolling around in my heart as I was waking up this morning. I often begin to sing it and find myself singing “higher ground” instead of “holy ground”. But it’s both. The ground we’ve been called to walk on and abide in is both holy ground and higher ground.

What does it mean to be holy? It means to be separated. Separated from something and separated to something. “Separated from sin and therefore consecrated to God” (Vine’s Dictionary). It means to be sacred. It means to be devoted to God.

This is not the way of the world. This is a higher way. This is a holy way.

We are not called to act like the world, talk like the world, or walk like the world. We have been called to act like God, talk like God, walk like God. And Who is God? Love.

When we walk in love, we will be walking that higher way, that holy way. We will be going up higher and drawing near to Him with every step. Enoch walked with God. Enoch walked with Love and then he was not for God took him.

All day today you will have opportunities to either walk like the world or to realize who you are and what you’ve been called to and chose to walk like God. What does that mean? When you’re pushed to the limit, the world’s way is to be impatient and unkind. Put on love and be patient and kind. When someone is rude, the temptation will be to respond with rudeness. Love is not touchy, fretful, or resentful and never acts rude. When someone treats you badly the temptation is to notice and keep a record of their wrongs. Love covers a multitude of sins and forgives.

This is the higher way. This is the holy way. This is His way. Be ye holy as He is holy. It’s time to walk and live this way.

May you be rooted deep in love and founded securely on love, that you may have the power and be strong to apprehend and grasp with all the saints […the experience of that love] what is the breadth and length and height and depth [of it]… […and become a body wholly filled and flooded with God Himself]! (Ephesians 3:17,18, 19; Amplified)

Happy Mother’s Day!

Today I want to wish a Happy Mother’s Day not only to those women who have given birth to or adopted a child, but I also want to wish a Happy Mother’s Day to those who haven’t given birth or adopted, but long to one day be a happy mother of children.

This morning I am holding close to my heart in prayer, those women who may find this holiday difficult due to infertility. You are not alone and you are not without hope. No matter how many miscarriages. No matter how many years of infertility. None of that changes God or His Word.

In the beginning, at the earth’s creation, when God made man, He spoke a blessing over man.

And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth… (Genesis 1:26, KJV)

Now I’ve heard many teachings on this passage of scripture and one of the things I hear the most is, “This isn’t just about having babies.” They are right. The blessing God spoke over man, isn’t just about having babies, but that is most definitely a part of it.

In Exodus 23:26 God spoke to His people and told them what to expect when they followed and obeyed Him.

You shall serve the Lord your God; He shall bless your bread and water, and I will take sickness from your midst. None shall lose her young by miscarriage or be barren in your land; I will fulfill the number of your days. (Exodus 23:26, Amplified)

And from the book of Psalms we see more of His heart on this subject.

He maketh the barren woman to keep house, and to be a joyful of children. Praise ye the LORD. (Psalm 113:9, KJV)

Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, the fruit of the womb a reward… Happy, blessed, and fortunate is the man whose quiver is filled with them! (Psalms 127:3, 5; Amplified)

I like that it says, “He maketh”. Hannah didn’t maker herself a mother. Sarah didn’t make herself a mother. Rebekah didn’t make herself a mother. Elizabeth didn’t make herself a mother. And Mary, the mother of Jesus, most definitely did not make herself a mother. God made each of these women and many more mothers.

It says of Sarah,

Because of faith also Sarah herself received physical power to conceive a child, even when she was long past the age for it, because she considered [God] Who had given her the promise to be reliable and trustworthy and true to His word. (Hebrews 11:11, Amplified)

Today, have faith in God. Believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those that diligently seek Him. Trust yourself and your dreams to Him and let Him make you what you ought to be, a happy mother of children! (Mark 11:22; Heb 11:6; Heb 13:21)

Happy Mother’s Day!

Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He will give you the desires and secret petitions of your heart. (Psalms 37:4, Amplified)

Free to Love

I AM FREE by the Newsboys:

Through You the blind will see
Through You the mute will sing
Through You the dead will rise
Through You all hearts will praise
Through You the darkness flees
Through You my heart screams, I am free!

I am free to run
I am free to dance
I am free to live for you
I am free

Freedom! There’s nothing like it. The enemy of our souls would love to shut us down by putting us in bondage, but too bad for him, Jesus came to set us free. And the enemy is no match for our King!

So Jesus said to those Jews who had believed in Him, If you abide in My word [hold fast to My teachings and live in accordance with them], you are truly My disciples. And you will know the Truth, and the Truth will set you free. (John 8:31-32, Amplified)

If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed. I know that ye are Abraham’s seed; but ye seek to kill me, because my word hath no place in you. (John 8:36-37, KJV)

His Truth will set you free. In the Amplified Bible John 8:6 says when He sets you free “you are really and unquestionably free.” No question about it, you are free!

The whole Bible is the Truth. Today I want to share a little of that Truth and I believe it will help set you free from those things that have tried to hang on. Your part is to make a place for His Word in your heart and in your life. I like what one minister says, he says “Make the word of God final authority in your life.”

The truth is you are righteous if you have accepted Jesus into your heart.

For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him. (2 Corinthians 5:21, KJV)

He was made sin and you were made righteous. You are in right standing with God here and now and nothing is going to change that! He took your sin and gave you His righteousness! One minister says, “In life I got an F, but Jesus got an A. I got His report card!” (Leif Hetland, You Were Created for Love)

How did you become righteous?

But now the righteousness of God has been revealed independently and altogether apart from the Law, although actually it is attested by the Law and Prophets. Namely, the righteousness of God which comes by believing with personal trust and confident reliance on Jesus Christ (the Messiah). [And it is meant] for all who believe… He Himself is righteous and… He justifies and accepts as righteous him who has [true] faith in Jesus. (Romans 3:21-22,26; Amplified)

You were made righteous by your faith in Jesus! Nothing more, nothing less.

You were forgiven of all your sins and your enemy has been defeated. Your enemy is a hasbeen!

And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; Blotting out the handwriting of the ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a show of them openly, triumphing over them in it. (Colossians 2:13-14, KJV)

He forgave you of your sins and He “cancelled and blotted out and wiped away the handwriting of the note (bond) with its legal decrees and demands which was in force and stood against us.” He also “disarmed the principalities and powers that were ranged against us and made a bold display and public example of them” in Christ by the work of the cross! (Colossians 2:13-14, Amplified)

Your enemy has been defeated and disarmed!

Two more truths to set you free.

Giving thanks to the Father… [Who] has delivered and drawn us to Himself out of the control and dominion of darkness and has transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, In Whom we have redemption through His blood, [which means] the forgiveness of our sins. (Colossians 1:12-14, KJV & Amplified)

There is no fear in love [dread does not exist], but full-grown (complete, perfect) love turns fear out of doors and expels every trace of terror! (1 John 4:18, Amplified)

Because He loved you He sent His Son. Because of Love the Son died in your place and cleansed you of your sins and defeated your enemy. Because of His love He seated you in heavenly places, in Christ, far above all principalities and powers. You have been transferred from the dominion of darkness and into the Kingdom of the Son of His love. Now let His love run full course in your life. Humble yourself and submit yourself to God. Submit yourself to Love. Receive His Grace! Resist that defeated hasbeen, the devil, and he will flee from you in stark terror. (Jn 3:16; Eph1:21; Eph 2:4,6; James 4:6-7; James 4:7 )

Now you are free to love!

Earnestly Desire

But earnestly desire and zealously cultivate the greatest and best gifts and graces (the higher gifts and the choicest graces). And yet I will show you a still more excellent way [one that is better by far and the highest of them all — love]. (1 Corinthians 12:31, Amplified)

I think about this scripture often. I think about the gifts of the Spirit: the word of wisdom, the word of knowledge, wonder-working faith, gifts of healing, the working of miracles, prophecy, discerning of spirits, tongues and interpretation. And I think a lot about love.

Now many of you are right there with me. Doing just what the scriptures tell us to do, earnestly desiring and zealously cultivating these gifts, these graces. Some on the other hand, may believe that these things have passed away. I can tell you from experience that these gifts are still alive and well, as can many others who have simply believed and obeyed God’s Word.

So, as this scripture has instructed, many of us have desired these gifts. But it says to do so earnestly. Let’s take a quick look at that word earnestly.

It means to burn with zeal, to be zealous in the pursuit of good, to desire earnestly, to pursue, to exert one’s self for one, to be zealously sought after (www.blueletterbible.org).

The other day as I read this scripture it struck me how to do what this passage says. How to pursue these gifts earnestly. And that is to desire them for no other reason, with no other motivation, but that of love.

I spend much of my week in hospitals and nursing homes. I teach classes where the sick come to be healed. I get calls from a friend of a friend who has a terminal disease who heard that I might be able to help them. I see and hear from a lot of sick and dying people and because of my overwhelming desire to see them healed, I have an overwhelming desire to operate in the gifts of the Spirit. I have no other motivation.

I don’t care to be seen or known. I care about seeing sick and dying people set free to the glory of God. And there are times that the only way that’s going to happen is by the operation of one or more of those gifts.

So it is His love in me for these people, His love alone, that drives me to my knees in prayer. It is His love that causes me to fast and pray. It is His love that causes me to study, search and meditate the scriptures earnestly looking for how to minister God and His healing power to these sick and dying people.

I truly believe that this is the only way, love is the only way, that we can ever really earnestly desire and zealously cultivate these gifts the way He intended.

For the love of Christ controls and urges and impels us… (2 Corinthians 5:14, Amplified)

Christ’s love has moved me to such extremes. His love has the first and last word in everything we do. (2 Corinthians 5:14, Message)

The earnest (heartfelt, continued) prayer of a righteous man makes tremendous power available [dynamic in its working]. (James 5:16, Amplified)