Overcoming Love

Love

Divine love suffers long; divine love is kind; divine love envies not; does not make a display of itself, is not puffed up, does not behave itself uncomely, seeks not its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; it does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but it rejoices in the truth; it bears all things, it believes all things, it hopes all things, it endures all things. Divine love never falls: but whether there are prophecies, they shall be done away; whether there are tongues, they shall cease; whether there is knowledge, it shall vanish away. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8 GDBY_NT)

Something that I have been mulling over in the last few weeks is the necessity of the saints of God being so dead to themselves and alive in Christ that they abide in His love and nothing else. The times we are in in this world as it is coming apart and relationships are being strained to the limit, demands of us something supernatural if we are to remain faithful and to those who God has given us for it is written of this time, “Because of offenses the love of many shall wax cold.” The following is an excerpt from T. Austin-Sparks’ book, “My Bold Servant.”

Jesus knew that the time had come for Him to leave this world and go to the Father. Having loved His own who were in the world, He now showed them the full extent of His love. (John 13:1 NIV)

No ministry of the servant of Jesus Christ can be a triumphant ministry unless there is a deep, strong, abiding love…. Love is going to solve our problems and to bring us into victory; but apart from a sufficient love, the problems of human make-up, the many differences of disposition and character and all that goes to make up a company, and the continuous drain and strain, with all the pressure that comes from the enemy, will present a problem, a perplexity and a paralyzing task….

We may ask, “How did the Lord manage to maintain the relationship with His disciples?” They were so difficult, so different, so disappointing. “Having loved His own… He loved them unto the end.” That is the answer. Love got above all that they were; love gave the extra thing which enabled Him not to take them just as they were and end there. So in our relationships, the spirit of the true servant is only possible as there is a deep love. Upon all those who have ideas of serving the Lord and working for Him I would urge this consideration: that the work of the Lord is not some thing which you outwardly and objectively take up. It is (if it is the true thing) the outworking of love for the Lord and for those who are the objects of His love. That is very simple, but it goes to the heart of things. Sooner or later you and I will be brought to the position where the question will be, Have we sufficient love to go on? Can we find enough love in our hearts to get us through this particularly difficult situation? The situation will be constituted by all those factors which resolve us into servants, bondslaves. It would not have become so acute if only we had been esteemed and honored, and held in high regard. But when the situation is created by a great deal being expected of us, by demands being made upon our generosity, our kindness, calling for an almost inexhaustible fund of patience, and the letting go of personal feeling; when really the main issue in the crisis is this – I am being imposed upon: too much is being expected of me: I am treated as a servant – that is where we are found out. Love alone can support this service. (emphasis added)

http://www.austin-sparks.net/english/books/001747.html

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12 comments on “Overcoming Love

  1. Yes and amen, Michael. Very good choice, that quote!

    If we have no love, we gain nothing – whatever we try to do for Him or others (cf. 1 Cor 13:1-3). Our love will not wax cold because all offenses will be turned into divine blessings by the One who loves us more than we might imagine.

    May God bless you and all readers of this blog with every good and perfect gift that comes down from our Father in Heaven!

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    • Michael says:

      Yes, Susanne, God is turning our coal into His diamonds for His crown by heat and pressure that he allows in our lives. You definitely speak from experience when you say, “Our love will not wax cold because all offenses will be turned into divine blessings by the One who loves us more than we might imagine.” Thank you for sharing all that He has done in you with us.

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      • You are welcome, Michael. Honestly, it is easier for me to share my experiences than to bottle up my pain. Or in other words, “A sorrow shared is a sorrow halved.” Thanks so much for your continued prayer support, my dear brother! MUCH appreciated!!

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      • Michael says:

        Susanne, you are so welcome. His love for you in me can do no other. I am glad to have helped share your load. “She ain’t heavy! She’s my sister!” 🙂

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  2. Kennth Dawson says:

    Absolutely..as Sue just said in her comment without love we are nothing..your opening line is the key..unless we are dead to ourselves and how we feel with our human feelings and alive with mr. Agape alive within us to take over we will be useless.the proof of the pudding is in how we respond to others..mr Sparks was right..how could Jesus love those men and females that were tagging along with him with all their self centeredness..it was by the agape love of the father controlling him from above..and we are certainly no exception..too many modern day people who claim to be Christians are concerned about what translation of the bible they adhire to or what person they are following-you know like Olsteen or whoever or how do vote-you know republican or demo or whatever..when they completely overlook who is in control of their being from inside..Christ alone must be the expression out of our being or we are just muttering a bunch of useless words.

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    • Michael says:

      Thanks Kenneth, This gives even greater meaning to Jesus’ words, “My kingdom is not of this world.” It is by His Spirit and His love that HIS kingdom is being built up in each one of us. All other things are temporal and will pass away. The older I get, the more my focus is on all things eternal like His love in me for the saints of God and obeying HIS voice alone. You can tell a lot about “Christians” by what is coming out of their mouths… the abundance of where their hearts are REALLY at… the things of God or the things of this world like sports, work, politics and such.

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  3. Michael says:

    Thanks, Susanne.
    The picture I chose was more appropriate to what is happening among the saints at this time than I first realized. Many of us have been wounded by things in our past and as such we walked in circles with heads down rehearsing the same painful events over and over in our minds going in circles (the people in the background of the picture). But then God does this miracle in our lives, some times over a period of weeks, healing us and setting us free with His love. And we become like the little girl, set free of her rut and clutching the love and walking toward the One who loves her into His Light.

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    • Absolutely true, Michael. Very well said! 🙂

      And when the little girl has met the One who loves her, she will have the power to go back into the darkness (dark background) and share her God-given new heart with those whose minds are still going in circles – whoever they might be, saints or sinners, friends or enemies.

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      • Michael says:

        Absolutely, for this is the love of Christ that fills in the holes where those wounds were in our hearts… Where there was death, now there is LIFE and it is the love God shed abroad in our hearts by His miraculous power that we now have power to “comfort others with the same comfort wherein we have been comforted.” God is soooo far ahead of our adversary in all that he does! He might have meant these things for evil, but God has meant them for good. One healed person can put to flight a thousand, but two healed people serving Him together can put to flight 10,000! To our Daddy be all the glory, forever, Amen!

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  4. Pat Orr says:

    Amen to all the above. Years ago I was uneasy and worried over the conduct of someone very dear to me. The Lord spoke to my heart, “If he messes up his life, do you have enough love to take care of him?”. I had to consider my answer. As best I knew how, I considered what that might mean. Then I answered, I believe that I do. The Lord said, ” Then you have enough love to cover it. That sets you free in the situation”. Praise God he did not mess himself up. But I learned a little more about the freeing power of love.

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    • Michael says:

      Wow, Pat! That is wonderful!!! What a lesson. I also have had to learn that love covers. God showed me the passage about Noah and his sons and the difference between Ham and the other two. Ham looked upon his father’s nakedness and went out and told THE WHOLE WORLD! While Shem and Japeth, chose NOT to look upon it, but rather to cover him and tell no one. They were free and Ham came under a curse. Yes, love frees us and frees the victims as well!
      Thanks so much for sharing this wonderful revelation He has given you, dear sister!

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  5. Becky says:

    This struck me this morning: “Upon all those who have ideas of serving the Lord and working for Him I would urge this consideration: that the work of the Lord is not some thing which you outwardly and objectively take up. It is (if it is the true thing) the outworking of love for the Lord and for those who are the objects of His love. That is very simple, but it goes to the heart of things. Sooner or later you and I will be brought to the position where the question will be, Have we sufficient love to go on? Can we find enough love in our hearts to get us through this particularly difficult situation?”

    SO GOOD!

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