Okay, here comes that Sword of the Spirit. The Lord has been searching my heart lately and showing me some things. Not fun, but I can understand why Adam and Eve wanted to run and hide in the garden, because sometimes I want to run and hide too.
If you were to ask me if I loved other people, I would say ” OF COURSE! I have the Love of Jesus in my heart. I forgive, and quite frankly, I can’t think of anyone I hate.” I would answer this patting my back, “oh, Lisa, you are just sooooo Christ like” If you were to ask my friends, they’d probably agree too….uhhhmmmm, right?
So lately, I can hear the spirit say and remind me : Love does not demand it’s own way. WAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA! Really?
Not that I’m some big brat, but I do like things to go my way. I’m just being honest. I plan my days, my hours and my trips- allowing for some interference, but if my entire plan goes haywire-I not always thrilled (ok, I get mad). For instance: My Disney trips are planned from morning to night- I have everything mapped out- where we go first, who gets the fast pass, what restaurant we will be in for lunch, who gets the next fast pass, while I get in line for small world, and run to line for Mickey signing.Then a quick run to the parking lot to get to our 6:15 dinner reservations at sho-gun. My family doesn’t mind, in fact, they know if they follow me, all will go well and everyone has fun. I tell my outside family and cousins ” no, I will not go to disney with you, you do not want to go with me”. So they know, that’s one place I draw the line when it comes to sharing the day. However,circumstances beyond my control……. throw me in a big family vacation… with other dictators besides myself- totally annoying! I could rip out my hair and roll around the asphalt screaming or take an advil and tell myself this will be the worst day ever (which is actually my coping mechanism, that way if anything good happens, I’m super happy)
To add to it, I was flipping through channels early this morning and I heard Sid Roth say “What is love, that one would lay down his life for another”. Immediately my mind said to me, yep, Lisa, that’s you…… There isn’t anyone you wouldn’t lay down your life for. Before I had a chance to pat myself on the back, the Spirit reminded me “are you kidding? you didn’t even let that car get in your lane yesterday”
So the Lord has been showing me, maybe I’m not all there like I thought I was. This one “not demanding my own way” is going to be a tough one to get through. I didn’t realize how many things I want -“my way”. I can’t even watch the tv unless the clicker is in my hand- seriously- I think I have small seizures if I can’t hold it while I watch tv. How can I not demand my own way? I’m getting a stomach ache just thinking of this change in me- not going to be easy ! However, I’m jumping in and will accomplish this- not on my own, but the grace of the Lord and the power of the Holy Spirit through Jesus. Pray for me.
Now on to the LOVE TEST— and note to self- don’t just ask yourself in your own wisdom these questions, but ask the Lord to show you if there is anything in your heart you need to change…
- Are you Kind? Do you consider others? what do your actions say?
- Are you patient? How do you behave in line at the DMV? Are you patient with others? Do you allow for the faults of others with patience? Do you expect everyone to be where you are spiritually and get annoyed if they are not as holy as you?
- Do you get jealous? Do you despise your brother’s house? Do you want to kick your sister’s car? Do you stand angry and silent when someone tells you something wonderful in their life ” I won $100,000 with the lotto numbers you gave me”
- Are you boastful? Do you love to toot your own delirious horn? Do you take a compliment and let everyone know about it for the next 10 years (in your own words).
- Are you proud? haughty? prideful? Do you judge others? Do you think you are super Christian and everyone else is pathetic because they are not at your high level of religiousity?
- Are you rude? be truthful! How do you treat others? Are you nice to everyone? Do you consider other’s feelings? Do you talk to others and say hello? Do you enjoy slinging rude comments like darts to insult people? How do you treat others who are rude to you? yikes! it was easier thinking of all the rude people we know- wasn’t it? Well, how do you respond to the rudies?
- Do you demand your own way? guilty!
- Are you irritable? I’d like a recall on this one- but that is not gonna happen – so when I’m irritable – I’m not being loving???? great, another one I need to work on. If you’re judging me here, let me know and I’ll give my kids a huge chocolate bar and send them to your house for the afternoon. hahahahahahaha, then tell me you never get irritated. okay, fine, I’ll work on that too.
- Do you keep a record of wrongs people have done to you? yes you do! I know it. Erase them from you brain and determine not to think about them again. Give it to God. I don’t want my wrongs recorded, so I probably shouldn’t record the wrongs of others either. Fix your thoughts Phil 4:8
- Do you rejoice about injustice or rejoice whenever the truths wins out. Sounds like a safe one, doesn’t it. hmmmm let’s rephrase.. Do you rejoice when you are caught in a lie? Do you rejoice always in the truth? Do you try to make your own truths?
- Love never gives up! Are you determined- have you set your mind to never give up? Are you always walking with the Lord and remembering and hoping in all His promises? – it’s another post- but I’ve been noticing examples in scripture where Persistance pays off – it’s true. Be persistant and determined in your prayers, your studies, and you walk with the Lord. Don’t give up on the Lord, and keep praying for the salvation of those around you- and never give up. (The serpent chants “I can’t, I can’t”- if you catch yourself saying that, consider it’s orgins)
- Are you always hopeful? or are you always complaining? stop complaining! Where’s your faith? Don’t you know the Promises are God are true- they are yes and amen!
- Love never loses faith- Fear God and not man! Do you let the words of man worry and shake you or do you rely on the Lord your God?
- Love endures all things. Satan wants you to give up- he chants “I can’t, I can’t” in your mind continually. You know that you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you! He will give you the power to endure all things.
Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proudor 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.
If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing.If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.
May the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of Glory, may give unto you the spirit of Wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him, that the eyes of your understanding being enlightened, that you may know what is the hope of His calling and what the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints and what is the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of His mighty Power. May Christ dwell in your hearts by faith, that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and the length, and depth and height, and to know the Love of Christ which passeth all knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.
Now unto Him that is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think according to the power that works in us. Unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.