The Integral Weave of Love

Are you and I consistent in the manner in which we choose to conduct our lives? How we choose to live, move and have our being will most definitely chart out a course that determines what we display in the way of character that indeed touches every life our life touches. What goes out from within us indeed does come back around to greet us, does it not when all is said and done. Consider the gravity of such a statement and the impact it has upon the very world in which you and I conduct life.

“I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. As the love of God and His goodness envelopes and encompasses one’s heart truly then as “captured and consumed” are we in His holy drawing embrace and all that is not in alignment “with” is “imprisoned”. A prisoner of the Lord being a most blessed place indeed is one of a freedom unknown truly to many today.

In God, all are called; “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for his own possession, that you may proclaim the excellencies of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. (1 Peter 2:9)
How are you and I responding to this call or are we responding at all? To gather together in the presence of God in worship, word and for the building up and edification of one another in our most holy faith can shift our very lives in that time together, however if when we come out of assembly what does it profit if we go right back to our comfortable, convenient and familiar way of life that we are so accustomed to maintaining which may the “same ole same” repeated over daily from sunrise to sunset Monday through Friday? What will that instill into our home, community, city and surrounding territory of our lives?

The church does not consist merely of what takes place within the walls of a building or facility during given hours of the week. It is to be the catalyst for setting the atmosphere of our neighborhood, our work place, the market place, the business place and civic center for social climate nurturing.

For anyone who hears the Word of God but does not carry it out is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror, and after observing himself goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like, according to James 1:23-24. But the one who looks intently into the perfect law of freedom, and continues to do so not being a forgetful hearer, but an effective doer, will be “blessed in what he does”. Are we being effective men and women of integrity and purpose whose lives honor God and one another? We are to bear the presence of God and naturally this is meant to be cultivated and multiplied repeatedly through the course of our lives.

Are we living to love and thus fully loving life to it’s fullest in our living? Why not? Jesus reminds us; “The most important is, “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” There is no other commandment greater than these.”
In thus we fulfill the royal law. “The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple; (Psalm 19:7)

God’s plan for living to love does make wise the very simple basics that keeps life integral, intact, flowing and honors Him and every one of His sons and daughters. This is sure, true, tried and tested. So why does it seem to be not enough for some? Why go wanting and looking for more when all of the highest fulfillment is discovered within, right in front of our eyes. May we choose to love, always, every time.

The Chalice of Love and Goodness

What is it that you and I love most in life? Where our heart is, there shall our treasure be discovered and found. There shall the very declaration of where we put our focus, form our thoughts and thus become the words that we find ourselves speaking.

This is what we end up manifesting in life, do we not? What are we giving our passion to? What fuels your passion in this very moment and hour? Are you in fact even passionate about anything in particular? Are there times and perhaps it is now where you may be feeling a sense of being dead to life or maybe your life is lacking a vibrancy that was once present or one that you know has or longs to come forth with at least a greater sense of fullness?

“I know your works. You have the reputation of being alive, but you are dead. Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works complete in the sight of my God. Remember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. (Revelation 3:1-3 ESV)

I reference this in kindness as a way of remembering. Perhaps we go about to take back territory in our spiritual life to then only release it once again unawares. Don’t go back to sleep my friend; be aware of the tactics of the adversary of your soul who seeks to kill, steal and destroy. One must remain vigilant and cannot afford to become careless. As I stated yesterday in this blog; passion and practice calls us consistent attention.

“Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life, is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever”. (1 John 2:15 ESV)

Is the Father’s love prevailing in your heart and life right now? It is ever present and never wavers or fails but are you embracing it?

See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. For this is the message that you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. Are you intentionally keeping yourself in the love of God?

With the love of God, comes the bringing forth of the fruit thereof which is the “charis” or grace of the goodness of God. This comes into play in the bearing of His presence or His glory. Are we truly possessing our vessel in the holy presence of God? “Charis” defined is, grace that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness, grace of speech, goodwill, loving-kindness, favor of the merciful kindness by which God brings the attributes of the person of Jesus though into our expression thereof of the goodness of God. I don’t know about you but I so long to exude such from my being and for this to be shed abroad into the hearts of those whose my life touches. One who truly and openly displays and lavishes upon others the fruits of the Spirit. This display of love is truly infectious is it not? It takes considerable resistance to overcome and push away it’s presence.

A favorite musical composition I am deeply touched by is “Ubi Caritas” (“Where Charity Is”) which has evolved into many iterations and compositions. It’s message is as follows; where charis and love are, God is there. A bonding exists between the love of God and “charis”. It is the glue by which all consists in God’s creative plan. I’d like us to get this picture into our hearts.

The love of Christ has gathered us into one.
Let us rejoice in Him and be glad.
Let us fear, and let us love the living God.
And from a sincere heart let us love as one.

Where charis and love are, God is there.
At the same time, therefore, are we gathered into one:
Lest we be divided in mind, let us beware.
Let evil impulses stop, let controversy cease.
And in the midst of us may there live Jesus; His heart, life and breath.

Where charis and love are, God is there.
At the same time we see that with the saints also,
His face in glory, O Christ our God:
The joy that is immense and good, unto the
World without end. May it be so!

In Jesus we are “the salt” of the earth. Has the saltiness lost it’s savor? This is a question that we might ourselves right now. May our passion and practice bring forth from within our being an expression of the very best that we can be in and through Jesus.

“An invitation to Participation and Practice”

Something is stirring in the spiritual atmosphere around me. I particularily noticed it beginning yesterday. As I went to the grocery store yesterday I could sense each person around me in a new way. God is moving in something new and fresh that I sense none of us have ever seen. It is like a holy moment or pause where it seems like time is standing still so we may be particularily aware. The next move of God always begins deep with us. Are we paying attention? Please do not dismiss these summer months as just another season to enjoy; I am sensing that this time holds special significance in God’s plan unfolding now in the earth.

I am pondering this morning some surreal truth in this picture. I found myself saying that “every” moment is “a holy moment” truly. Yes, the holiness of God’s presence can seem to have a pronounced effect at given times and seasons however is that not due to our perception and level of awareness varying? He is unchangeable; yesterday, today and forever.

“But as he who called you is holy, you also be holy in all your conduct, since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.” (1 Peter 1:15,16)
“Who shall ascend the hill of the Lord? And who shall stand in his holy place? He who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not lift up his soul to what is false and does not swear deceitfully.” (Psalm 24:3,4)

So what is my conclusion in this matter? Why not make the following a guide for a prayer of our heart to always carry before us; “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from your presence, and take not your Holy Spirit from me. Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit. (Psalm 51:10-12) As long as we are willing we have His promise to uphold us. It goes back to our level of passion doesn’t it? What do I love the most in life? Then I must give that my all and best in participation and practice.
Will you join me in believing God for the very best in us to be brought forward and to manifest where we live?