I've recently re-started Beth Moore's Revelation series (I started at the beginning of the summer and then started another study at church--so now I'm back to the first one) and she is so dynamic! I just LOVE her. She has such a way with women...OK moving on--my purpose is not to talk about how great Beth is--but she is great, isn't she?
On the third teaching CD she is talking about Rev. 2&3. She goes into detail about only one of the letters to the churches leaving the others for the student to figure out for herself. One thing she said stood out to me with such force I had to address it (mostly for myself, but you're lucky enough to get to share my rambling thoughts). The church at Ephesus had forsaken their first love. They did so many other things that got God's attention for the good, but they had a fault that I think a lot of us Christians today have. They forsook (is that a word) their love for God.
"I have something against you, namely, that you have forsaken your first love." Rev. 2:4
I so don't want to be that person! I don't want to be found lacking in my love for Him, do you? So how do we love Him with a love we can be proud of? Good question, I mean can you really love God as He deserves? That I don't know, but I do know the Word says in 1 John 4:19 that-
"We love because He first loved us."
What should we do in response to such an amazing love from Him? It's easier said than done I think. When Jesus came He abolished the Law and the old Covenant and left His church two simple commands: to love the Lord with all your heart, soul, mind, and strength AND to love your neighbor as yourself (Matt. 27: 37-39). Easy right? Yeah, OK. I can follow two things...I've got the love the Lord one down!! But love my neighbor as myself? Depends on who the neighbor is right? I don't think Jesus was talking about just our next door neighbor either. I think He meant ALL people...even the crazy terrorist ones (He died for them the same as He did you and me). Not so easy anymore. I need to work on loving my neighbor and I pray that God'll give me His eyes to see others as He does--then it will be easy to love them.
I think if I choose to love others and love Him, then I am actively pursuing Him, not forsaking Him and that's exactly where I want to be.