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Love – 2018-04-04

When our hearts are filled with love, there are two places for it to go –
we can express it
we can hold on to it tightly.

Sometimes it is expressed in inappropriate, even hurtful ways – dysfunctional families, society often use love as a weapon, to hurt and control. So we have learned to express love in a hurtful, disrespectful way in order to protect hearts… this does not protect, it only deepens the hurt… this is an expression of hurt, not love, yet we often do not know the difference.

Jesus calls us to love – anyway.

Sometimes love is expressed in a Godly way. One of the prayer stations I fear to begin writing is LOVE – because I know that in writing it, God will call me to a love that is unconditional, transparent, and oh so painful. I have often expressed that you can love someone without loving their actions. But to look into the eyes of someone you love, and hear their hurtful words, then to breathe out that pain and say, “I love you anyway…” is beyond our human ability, but not beyond the power of The Holy Spirit in us. I know that although I love others even when they are hurtful, God will call me to a greater love once that door, that heart that says, “teach me, Lord to love like YOU love…” is opened.

I am getting ready to go on my prayer walk… I am already arguing with God… “I am NOT READY for this prayer station yet… I want to work on the one on Your magnificent creation, or the one on Game of Thrones instead… But even as the thoughts leave my lips, I know that if I hope to write honestly about Jesus’ love, this is going to be a journey of years, not minutes.

Writing the LOVE prayer station should be easy after living the one on adversity, right? Oy… not so much. After adversity that shell is especially hard. I want to slip in to Pro mode and not transparent, loving mode. The transition back to transparent is brutal.

Expressing love like Jesus… our hearts are not programmed that way… but they are certainly built that way… because our God created us to love Him wholly, and once we remove our self-serving desires…. wow… there are endless possibilities. Think about a new computer – we get it fresh and new, then it becomes what we put into it… as babies, we are new and fresh… and then the cookies and downloads start building up until they slow down our operating system. We replace computers, then put the same junk back into them until they slow down again… in fact, that’s pretty parallel to what we do with some relationships…

Our hearts are often like a nut – there are a variety of nuts, with different types of shells. Some of us have a heart that is a tough nut to crack…. but our hearts, the meat that is inside that shell, is precious and has endless possibilities. Google recipes with walnuts and your computer will explode…

One of the things God put on my heart 3 years ago – yet I’ve done nothing with it – is to create a walking path around the property. I walk much of that path every day… but I haven’t started an actual path per se. When I was hiking the PCT, the trail maintenance guy said he takes clippers and whittles away on his section every time he scouts it. Crews come in and help with some parts, other parts he just takes a little at a time.

Today, I need to fix my loppers… (the nut and pin were sheared off when hiking the PCT)… I need to start whittling away… this is a lifetime journey, not a one day, feel good, check that one off the list journey. Yes, will be writing the other prayer stations first… but I will be living several simultaneously. When writing adversity, I was also writing Thanksgiving… and living both.

When I open up my heart, I can read what God writes there… I think I know where this path is going, and then God reveals something new. We have been here 3 1/2 years. Yesterday God revealed a new section that brought the words to my lips, “Your mercies are new every morning! I feel like I am on a treasure hunt – spiritual treasure abounds for the visual… and this is why I so often “prayer walk…” my heart is too small to contain all the treasure that God reveals… His love, His revelation requires action… movement… positive expression.

my fitbit says I’ve done over 8 million steps since I got it. My God-Fit prays that every step I take honors Him… Each year God gives me a verse… this year He gave me a chapter.. Uh oh… it’s going to be a lot of walking… a journey!

“And I, brethren, when I came to you, did not come with excellence of speech or of wisdom declaring to you the testimony of God. 2 For I determined not to know anything among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified. 3 I was with you in weakness, in fear, and in much trembling. 4 And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, 5 that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.

Spiritual Wisdom
6 However, we speak wisdom among those who are mature, yet not the wisdom of this age, nor of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7 But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, 8 which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.

9 But as it is written:

“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

10 But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. 11 For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.

13 These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. 15 But he who is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is rightly judged by no one. 16 For “who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct Him?” But we have the mind of Christ.”
1 Corinthians 2 NKJV