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Sunday, February 25, 2018

Love wins

Pastor Chris Ney - That sounds like a weird title as often we see day after day that love does not win, partly because we have a warped view of what love is, but also because love is temporal to most. I was like that for a while some years back.  You had to earn my love and you could lose it even easier if you did something against me. Then when that happened I was on the path for revenge, taking matters into my own hands, I had an attitude of "How dare someone wrong me". Then all at once something happened that changed how I thought.  My revenge, my desire to get even or maybe even to get back and then some didn’t fill the void I thought it would, there was no sense of gratification, and in the long run I was still angry and miserable; and came to find out I was the only one. The person that wronged me was going on as if nothing happened and I was living with this anger and sense of wanting to get even.

Isn’t it even biblical to want an eye for an eye, tooth for tooth, hammer for hammer, shovel for life time of not speaking to them. Wow I really showed them!  Well, not really, as I was the only one still mad. Then I tried to back it up with the Bible and came across something different in the book of Matthew, as Jesus addresses this very issue. Even the same quote, but as only Jesus can do He took the old and made it all about the heart; not even the other person's heart but my own. OUCH. 

Matthew 5:39-42 “But I say to you, do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. And if anyone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. Give to the one who begs from you, and do not refuse the one who would borrow from you.”

This passage is saying a lot.  It isn’t saying that just because you follow Jesus you are a doormat, but it is saying that because you have been shown so much love, you ought to love in return, and that is the answer. It is not just the answer for right here and now but really for a healthier life as well. It takes work to be angry, mad, and to plot to seek revenge, and often-times while we are in the midst of that we miss what is important in the long run. We teach our kids to be the same and the circle starts. I know for certain in my life once I started to live this out (not perfectly), but day by day trying to live this out there was more joy, even in losing something there was joy. I wasn’t holding on to anger or hatred; I was free from that and could genuinely love anyone around me no matter what the circumstance. I didn’t have to be weak to actually display the greatest strength of all that only comes from Jesus. In the end and still now love does win, not always best friends but when we do not respond like the world thinks we should it causes a moment of pause for them to go why? What is different? Then we get to say JESUS is the difference.

Maybe you are reading this and have reached the end and you don’t know Jesus in a personal way.  You have heard of Him but don’t know Him.  Today you can, you right where you are can start a relationship with Jesus and receive the love that never fails, Ask Jesus for forgiveness and turn from your sin and turn to Him as Lord and Savior in your life. Maybe even by saying something as simple as this with your whole heart, "Jesus forgive me for all I have done, for my sin, I believe you are the one who died to pay for my sin and I am trusting you know as Lord and Savior in my life. Thank you, Jesus, for saving me and bringing me into your family." If you have said this with your whole heart you now have a relationship with Jesus and can start to live that out. AMEN. If you already know Him and are in the cycle of anger and bitterness it is time to stop and turn from your pride and arrogance and turn back to Jesus who is able to make all things new and all things right. 

Be the light you are called to be, right where you are, and live out the good news for all around you to see. No matter where life has had you, now is the time to take the first step and start new, start with love and watch God work around you.

If you are looking for family to connect with, I would like to invite you to join us at Vertical Church every Sunday @ 1030am 1200 Ken Thornton Blvd

You Are Loved!

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