July 24, 2020 by Gary Galloway
THE FRUIT OF LOVE
There is only one reason I am writing this, Juanita asked me to do this, At Gun Point! (Not really) Seriously, to approach this is to take on the goal of understanding and growing in love. This is a lifelong decision and a lifelong goal. We achieve it a step at a time. LOVE is so powerful that, in one word, it defines God.
I Jn. 4:8 “GOD IS LOVE”
Fruit is produced by a fruit bearing plant. As Christians, we know that learning to develop and increase the spiritual fruit of love in our lives requires a growing and deepening level of our relationship with our Creator. It requires time with Him, spending time in His Word and learning to listen for His often very soft voice. It requires our learning to respond to that nudge which is saying, “Ask that person how they are doing, offer to pray for them,”. Our normal response, “Lord, I don’t know them very well” doesn’t fly with Him. Increasing the fruit of our love requires an absolute commitment to His plan being worked out daily in our lives. Often, as we begin to feel His nudges, we will respond, “But Lord, I don’t have time” as we begin to reel off our list of things to take care of that day. It is amazing how often He seems to be unmoved about our huge load for the day. He is about loving and ministering to the hearts of others. He is about transferring His life to others in need. Often, our lists of washing to do, meals to prepare and work assignments to complete, just don’t compare with His immediate goal for that someone else. He is so often concerned about the “one”, the “one” who may just need a word of encouragement, a moment of knowing that someone cares, or hearing a scripture that blows away the dark cloud oppressing them.
I struggle in these areas just like many of you do. My wife, Joquetta, seems to respond to the Lord’s nudges so much quicker than I do. But, I’m getting better! and we both know of many, many times when we responded to the Lord’s nudge to call or respond to someone that the one receiving the call really felt ministered to and expressed real gratefulness for our call.
SMALL ACTS CAN PRODUCE GREAT FRUIT!
Producing more and better love fruit is directly connected to our FATHER and to our obedience to Him. Jn 3:16 “God so loved the world that He gave His only son so that whoever believed in Him should not perish but should have everlasting life.” When we made that spiritual transaction with Him to receive His forgiveness and to receive Him as our Savior, we were born again and His spiritual life came to indwell us. From that moment on we were changed. His Spirit, His spiritual life came to live within us. All the “I cant’s” in our life got changed in that moment to “I can!” “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” That should be burned into our life in capital letters.
I CAN DO ALL THINGS THROUGH CHRIST WHO STRENGTHENS ME
Of course there is a growth process for all us but when God lets us know that He wants something done through us, He will provide the direction and the strength to do it.
ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS!
A Grand Vision for our lives should be to love the Lord our God with all our hearts and to love others as ourselves. As this purpose propels our lives, we will become more and more in line with our Creator’s eternal purposes for our lives. Deut 6:5 “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your strength. Ro 13:9 “… You shall love your neighbor as yourself”
Love is the great pursuit. I Cor 13: 3…Amp. These verses are stated as our personal declarations of God’s Word. “I know that if I have not God’s love in me, I gain nothing. 4. My love endures long and is patient and kind. My love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy; I am not boastful or vainglorious, I do not display myself haughtily. 5. I am not conceited- arrogant or inflated with pride; I am not rude, or unmannerly, I do not act unbecomingly. God’s love is in me and does not insist on its own rights or on its own way, for it is not self-seeking; I am not touchy or fretful or resentful. I take no account of the evil done to me. I pay no attention to a suffered wrong. 6. I do not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoice when right and truth prevail. 7. Love in me bears up under anything and everything that comes and is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, without weakening. 8. God’s love in me never fails, never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end… 13. And so faith, hope, love abide… these three, but the greatest of these is love.”
As we pursue the Lord, as we pursue His love, we will be changed degree by degree, sometimes slowly, sometimes painfully, sometimes in the blink of our eye. We are to become more and more like Him in every part of our being. I encourage you as well as myself, to enter daily into the Great Vision. We will become more and more like Him as we pursue His love.
Be blessed now in all you are and in all you do.