Thursday, December 02, 2004

Paul's prayer for the church

In doing some reading this morning, an obvious fact struck me.

In 1 Thessalonians 3:12-13 Paul writes, 12 And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all, just as we do to you, 13 so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all His saints.

Loving the people I live/work/interact with is not an easy task. I do try, and most the time it might even look like I succeed, but I don't really love them (that's actually an understatement).

Paul's point is that I'm going about it the wrong way. The Lord is the only one who can increase my love for others. He is the source of love, so I need to stop trying to tap my depleted resources.

Furthermore, it's through learning to love "one another and all" that the Lord will "establish our hearts blameless in holiness." I'm pretty sure that means it's important.


Blogger Sean said...

As for loving the people you live/work/interact with, I like to reflect on C.S. Lewis's explanation of forgiveness and the requirement to love thy neighbor as yourself.

Lewis explains, and I'm oversimplifying an entire chapter in Mere Christianity, that loving our neighbors as ourselves is accomplished the same way we love ourselves. We don't always like ourselves, in fact we sometimes cannot stand who we are and how we are behaving, but we always love ourselves. In that same way we don't need to like our neighbor or his actions, but we must love our neighbor.

C.S. Lewis does a much better job with this concept, obviously, but I hope I was able to give you an idea of what he was talking about.

5:14 PM  
Blogger ~rich said...

Mere Christianity is one of my favorites...thanks for reminding me of that chapter.
Love is a decision and is evidenced by actions (not merely a feeling)

10:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please email me an address so that I can send you a book by Brennan Manning called The wisdom of Tenderness as it relates so well to your comments on loving one another. He wrote Ragamuffin Gospel and I suspect you probably have heard of him. Got your site from powerline. Thank you all for what you are doing for all of us. Bill.

2:44 PM  
Blogger ~rich said...

Bill, would like to email you, but don't have your address! mine is
Thanks for the offer for the book...I'll definitely take you up on it.

4:30 AM  

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