Friday, February 1, 2008

Challenged by L.O.V.E.

Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.
1 Corinthians 13:4-6

This week has been something else! It all started Sunday night. Anthony and I attended a new worship service at Gateway called Habitation. It’s a mixture of worship and message, lead by a highly respected Elder at Gateway - Steven Dulin - who is also anointed with an incredible prophetic gifting.

This first night [of many] was used to lay the foundation of learning how to love God’s way. The message was awesome and insightful, with several good points that were perfect for taking home for further meditation and life application. The one point that stuck with me is:


I’ve heard this point made before. It’s not original, but for me - that night - it got my attention and caused my wheels to spin. At the end of the night, we were given a challenge. To seek the Lord for a person in our life whom we consider “unlovable” and love them. I sought, and God answered. I won’t reveal the name of that person. I’ll just say that God definitely challenged me.

So, here we are. It’s Friday - almost the end of my first week - and I can say with great assurance that my challenge has been nothing short of a challenge. I can’t say that I’m that surprised. I accepted the challenge. I should have known there would be challenges, right? What I didn’t consider was that I’d be thrown into the deep end right away. I thought I’d at least get one swimming lesson in first.

I wish I could say that I have passed all my tests with flying colors. Nope. I wish I could say that I’ve passed at least one of my tests with flying colors. Nope. I wish I could say that I’ve at least passed one of my tests. Nope. If this was a baseball, I’d be a thousand. But this isn’t a game - it’s my life - and God is doing His best to make sure that my failures become successes. This isn’t about winning or losing. It’s about learning, growing and maturing in my walk with Christ Jesus.

I have struggled today to gain Godly perspective because my “unlovable” has been 100% unlovable for days now. Could God have been any less obvious when He chose this person for me? I have had to fight my flesh all day long. And sadly, it’s taken all day for me to be able to say that “my Spirit is willing, but my flesh is weak.” Until an hour ago, my Spirit didn’t even play a part in this. I’m not bragging, just being truthful.

I am a bit worn down by this today. I guess one could say that I’ve lived out the exact opposite of Jesus’ words, “My burden is easy and My yoke is light”. I’ve carried MY burden today and MY yoke feels like a ton of bricks.

Oh, that my ox-like heart wouldn’t be quite so ox-like.

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