(2 Corinthians 6:11-13)
11 O Corinthians! We have spoken openly to you, our heart is wide open. 12 You are not restricted by us, but you are restricted by your own affections. 13 Now in return for the same (I speak as to children), you also be open.
There really is no other way to live your life. Let me rephrase, there is a choice we have daily. To live your life in such a way that it’s open, transparent, full of freedom, and free of suspicion….OR…1/2 way open so that only others see a partial of who you really are. In that comes restrictions, and 1/2 truths, and partial judgments, and constant filtering of motivations. Bottom line: There is TOO MUCH ENERGY spent in living restricted and closed in heart. Especially with those who are fellow partners and friends in your life.
My daughter mentioned something yesterday during our worship experience at church and it just grabbed my heart and said…”yes…yes…yes…” She said, “Our life is a gift…” Let us remind ourselves that life is this gift that God has given to us; not to reserve and hold back but rather to live and express His life, love, and grace through. Open up your hearts and allow others to see and hear your love, passion as well as your hurt, and pain. But remove yourself from those who persuade you to hold back and play defense in life.
The schemes of the enemy is to keep you closed off from full expression of who God created you to be. Gods plan involves freedom, liberty, and pure openness towards others.
Don’t think personality, it’s much deeper than that. Personality is still much on the surface…Not Personality but Person. In every person there is a 4 year old child that is full of innocence, freedom, and smiles. He dreams, plays hard, and laughs out loud without any reservations. When you are around others and they seem distant and closed off….see the PERSON…draw that out of them and most of all, forget not to live like this yourself!
My wife told me about a little boy who came for prayer yesterday. The little boy wanted prayer for his hands. He wanted to have God’s hands. Natalie asked him, “So whats wrong with your hands?” His answer was absolutely so cute. His reply was, “My hands keep hitting people. I want Gods hands.”
The innocence of the child. Heart wide open…no reservations whatsoever! That’s is a longing in my soul. That openness is worth fighting for daily!
A little over 31 years ago I devoted my life to Christ and since then it’s been a “love journey”. A constant tug of war to fight for, believe, receive, and walk in God’s unconditional love for me over all the fears that try and keep me at arms distance from those who love me. “PERFECT LOVE CASTS OUT FEAR”, therefore my testimony is this: I still find myself afraid even after some of my greatest victories. He never stops chasing after me. His constant forward motion towards me helps me to trust Him more simply because I know when He is around, the things not rooted in love will be pulled while the things that eternally remain will be planted. Looking back, here are some “love nuggets” you may or may not agree with but they are true to me.
- LOVE is willing to be broken.
- LOVE is teachable.
- LOVE looks for the best in others first.
- LOVE drives out disingenuous display.
- LOVE fights for others, even at your own expense.
- LOVE trusts fully, knowing that rejection awaits daily.
- LOVE is willing to walk in the wilderness.
- LOVE obeys without understanding the whole scene or story.
- LOVE holds on to the realities of Gods Promise over senses.
- LOVE fights for innocence even though it’s misunderstood.
- LOVE runs towards Giants.
- LOVE Speaks truth despite its own hurt.
- LOVE is quick to say, I’m sorry, I’m wrong, Forgive me.
- LOVE Gives room for growth and development in others as well as themselves.
- LOVE recognizes who’s in the mirror.
- LOVE laughs, lives, looks for perspective before pronouncing judgement.
- LOVE Rests within even when there is chaos outside.
- LOVE Stays within his gifting lane and encourages others to find theirs.
- LOVE asks “why not” rather than give in to reason.
- LOVE makes a life rather than just make a living.
- LOVE gets to the edge…pauses…then jumps!
- LOVE is willing to get burned for his beliefs rather than bow for his compromise.
- LOVE Always asks: “God, what is your will?” , cause that’s all that really matters.
- LOVE pleases the ONE over the many.
- LOVE gives action over lip service.
- LOVE is never satisfied with mediocrity; only excellence!
- LOVE dies to defending itself; lives for standing alone in obedience.
- LOVE puts others before self, without expecting anything in return.
- LOVE cares for itself for the sake of others.
- LOVE is Messy, Misunderstood, and Meek, therefore it’s a MUST!
- LOVE is willing to be stretched holistically and trust the venue God chooses to use.
- LOVE always has a ‘not to do” list.
- LOVE deeply will cause one to hurt deeper.
- LOVE stands and stands and stands, until…it’s an UNBROKEN STANCE.
- LOVE Worships with passion; it looks disorganized because it is.
- LOVE does not demand its own way. There’s only LOVE way.
- LOVE bounces back even after 7 falls!
- LOVE is more about the constant than the instant.
- LOVE plays to win and is not afraid of losing 1 match.
- LOVE overcomes whatever comes.
- LOVE leverages authority for service not control.
- LOVE is faithful but doesn’t equate it with maintenance but rather progress.
- LOVE looks at 50 and says thank you for discovery, but no thanks to resignation.
- LOVE says 50 is ‘locker room’ time. Evaluate; Adjust; Play Hard
- LOVE inspires 40’s, honors 60’s +, is intentional when connecting to other 50’s.
- LOVE gives his heart to marriage, lends his ear to children, his money to grandchildren, appreciates the beauty in all of it.
- LOVE is best understood within the framework of silence and solitude.
- LOVE fights for 1 because it’s just right.
- LOVE also fights for the 100 because it’s just right.
- LOVE best understands what to do when he abides IN HIM.
pray for another 50 in years to come… Boo yah!
repentance – to turn around and go in the opposite direction. To be sorry for the actions. Though it includes sorrow and regret, it is more than that. It is a call to conversion from self-love, self-trust, and self-assertion to obedient trust and self-commitment to God. It is a change of mind that involves a conscious turning away from wrong actions, attitudes and thoughts that conflict with a Godly lifestyle and biblical commands, and an intentional turning toward doing that which the Bible says pleases God. In repenting, one makes a complete change of direction (180° turn) toward God.
Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance.
For thus says the Lord GOD, the Holy One of Israel: “In returning and rest you shall be saved; In quietness and confidence shall be your strength.” But you would not,
O Israel, return to the LORD your God, For you have stumbled because of your iniquity.
“But go and learn what this means: ‘I desire mercy and not sacrifice.’ For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”
“Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance, and do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones.
I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.
Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?
2 Corinthians 7:10
For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death.
Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward Go.
2 Peter 3:9
The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
2 Timothy 2:24-25
And a servant of the Lord must not quarrel but be gentle to all, able to teach, patient, in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth.
When I looked higher than what I feel.
Judged judged from high to low from near and far; only One removes life’s deepest scars
Trust broken, heart trampled, souls opportunities remain constant.
Just another battle on earths unkind war.
Sissing…Dissing…all vapors wrapped in lace; peel back another layer and truth shines in hypocritical grace.
The constant weaning out of life’s purest jewels; it’s difficult and figidy. Often times fools gold… I tripped again. Fell for it all.
There is one in the Midst that is a constant treasure; simple words, clear track, constant pleasure.
He’s the One from the backside of a Barn; across the track; nothing to wear but the words from his heart.
He’s genuine; no masking, no filtering, all truth much grace. Under Him, no weight no care, with Him, no fear no questions; following Him all gets clear in the midst of Earths war and strain.
It’s settled. Why think what’s here would ever fulfill what He only has declared clean. He Himself said, He gave himself to no man for He knew what was in them.
His approach was to what’s Higher; what’s greater, superior, to all earth. For the dust speaks; for the dust settles. All that remains is Him. Therefore He alone matters.