Be Quieted by His Love

Day 24 of the 28-Day #LoveChallenge

quieted by his love

The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; he will rejoice over you with gladness; he will quiet you by his love; he will exult over you with loud singing. Zephaniah 3:17

For 23 days I’ve been focused on writing about (and seeking to practice) the #LoveChallenge for the month of February (#LoveFor28). The focus has been to #LoveGod and #LoveOthers, which follows the first and greatest commandment found both in the Old and New Testaments.

My thinking in starting this was that in these challenging, tumultuous and divisive times love for God and love for others was very much needed. And if we focused more on what unites us than what divides us we’d experience more of what God intends for our lives.

I still believe that is true. And I have noticed my heart has become more sensitive, open and loving toward others – those different from me or difficult to love. Not maybe by leaps and bounds, but in quiet ways and gentle reminders by the Holy Spirit.

Still, there are times when we need to take a step back and realize we also need to receive love – God’s love.

I love this verse from Zephaniah because it tells me God is for me. He is mighty to save. He rejoices over me with gladness. And he will quiet me by his love.

Think of that. God knows all about our struggles, doubts, and the battles we face. He wants to quiet us by his love.

Sometimes we just need to be still. Find a quiet moment and place and let the Holy Spirit comfort and calm us in the love of the Father. And once we let his love in notice what follows:

he will exult over you with loud singing.

He calms our heart by his love and then he takes to singing – loudly – elevating our position to new heights!

Take this #LoveChallenge by just being still for a moment. Meditate on this verse from Zephaniah. Ask God to calm you by his love. Open your heart. Cast all your troubles and cares on him – let him fight for you. And most importantly, just be loved by him. Receive and be quieted by his love.

Previous Posts in the #LoveChallenge Series of February

Treasure Your Treasure with a Little Heart Emoji

Day 23 of the 28-Day #LoveChallenge

treasure your wife

The man who finds a wife finds a treasure, and he receives favor from the Lord. Proverbs 18:22 NLT

Whether you’ve found a wife or a husband, the one you’ve found is a treasure.

Treasures are greatly valued and are carefully looked after, protected, and loved. They are precious to us and cherished above all else.

Sometimes, though, we take our treasures for granted or we forget just how special and important they are to us. Sometimes, life and the things we’re striving towards captures our attention and our treasure becomes, well, not top of mind.

Every once in a while we need to be reminded and do something to show how much we appreciate and care for the people in our lives we treasure.

Yesterday, during a particularly stressful time at work the thought popped into my mind to send my wife a text to tell her I loved her. And so I did and this was our exchange:

love you emoji

What I learned from this is it doesn’t take much to tell someone you treasure that you love them, and make their day. And let me tell you, when you make their day, it will make yours, too.

After I did this, I came across a tweet from my friend Rob Rienow which said, “Husbands, little heart emoji’s are kind of corny, but your wife will probably like for you to text one to her today.” My reply: “Funny, I did this before seeing your tweet and it totally made her day!” To which he replied, “Well done!! I use ‘Bitmoji’ too. A big hit.”

So there you go, this little treasure your treasure tactic is a proven winner! Oh, and by the way, treasuring your treasure finds favor with the Lord, too. šŸ™‚

Treasure the one you treasure and take this #LoveChallenge: send someone you love a text – just out of the blue – tell them you love them. Throw in an emoji or a Bitmoji, or two. Do it right now. You’ll be so glad and blessed that you did.

Previous Posts in the #LoveChallenge Series of February

Abounding in Love

Day 22 of the 28-Day #LoveChallenge

abounding in love

You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you. Psalm 86:5

Yesterday’s #LoveChallenge post on Love and Faithfulness United drew from a common theme found in my Scripture reading for that day: persevere in doing the will of God to receive the promises of God.

Likewise, today’s reading plan brought another central theme to bear on my mind and heart – a question really – “What do you want the Lord to do for you?”

what do you want me to do for youI saw it first in the story of the blind man in Luke, chapter 18, to whom Jesus said, “What do you want me to do for you?” “Lord, I want to see,” he replied” (v41).

Then came the nearly identical question posed to Caleb by his daughter: When she got off her donkey, Caleb asked her, “What can I do for you?” (Joshua 15:18.)

What do I want the Lord to do for me?

What do you want him to do for you?

It’s a simple question. It made me think, what do I really want or need? And as I thought about it one thing stood out: joy. I want to be filled with more joy. I want the joy of being in God’s presence no matter what.

Then, wouldn’t you know it, I also read Psalm 86 today and the first half a dozen verses really stood out for me, especially verse 4:

Bring joy to your servant, Lord, for I put my trust in you.

Verse 5, follows: “You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you.”

“What do you want me to do for you, Greg?”

“Lord,” I replied, “I call to Ā you who are forgiving and good, abounding in love – bring joy to your servant, for I put my trust in you.”

That is my personal #LoveChallenge for today. It’s to believe in the abounding love of our Lord to all who call on him he asks, “What can I do for you?”

Like the poor and needy, and the blind man everyone wanted to just shush up and see go away, Jesus asks, “What can I do for Ā you?”

Call on him. He is forgiving and good, abounding in love; he wants to hear from you, he wants to hear you say it. He’s not too busy. He has nothing more important to do. He’s abounding in love – for you – yes you!

More Posts in the #LoveChallenge Series

Love and Faithfulness United

Day 21 of the 28-Day #LoveChallenge

love and faithfulness

Love and faithfulness meet together; righteousness and peace kiss each other. Psalm 85:10

Have you noticed, sometimes when reading different parts of the Bible the passages all seem to come together in one common theme?

This just happened during my #DailyBibleReading plan, which included:

  • Hebrews 10:35-36 (Verse of the Day)
  • Joshua 13-14
  • Luke 18:1-17
  • Psalm 85
  • Proverbs 13:7-8

The unifying theme from these passages was how wholehearted devotion to follow the will of God brings about the promises of God.

I saw that in the experience of Caleb, who for 45 years remained committed to God’s plan to overtake the land of Canaan. Joshua 14: 8,9,14 speaks of his wholehearted devotion over this period and how God rewarded it with an inheritance in the land of promise.

In Luke, Jesus spoke to his disciples about not giving up in prayer, but to be persistent because faithfulness matters – a lot. He asks the question, “When the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8b)

Add to this the verse of the day from Hebrews 10:35-36

So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.

Is it all just coincidence that all these passages from all over the Bible speak as one? Or is the Holy Spirit saying something to me (perhaps you) today about perseverance, faithfulness, not giving up, following his revealed will wholeheartedly, to receive his blessing, his promise?

I believe it’s more than coincidence. I believe it’s a reminder to persevere in love for God and love for others – our #LoveChallenge – and his first andĀ greatest commandment. And when we do, “love and faithfulness meet together” and good things come our way.

More Posts in the #LoveChallenge Series

Celebrating Our Love for God’s Word

Day 20 of the 28-Day #LoveChallenge

love god's word

Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long. Psalm 119:97

 

The longest of all the psalms and the longest chapter in the entire Bible, Psalm 119 is a love poem celebrating the word of God in all its forms and meanings.

It is said the writer of this psalm was:

  • (1) passionately devoted to the word of God as the word of life;
  • (2) humbly acknowledged nevertheless, the errant ways of his heart and life;
  • (3) knew the pain – but also the fruits – of God’s corrective discipline; and
  • (4) had suffered much at the hands of those who arrogantly disregardedĀ God’s word and made him the target of their hostility, ridicule, and slander. (NIV Study Bible.)

There’s a wonderful symmetry of 22 stanzas, one for each letter of the Hebrew alphabet, and each containing 8 verses. Each of the 8-verse stanzas makes use of six to eight relational terms to God’s word: law, statutes, precepts, commands, commandments, laws, decrees, word, and promise.

No #LoveChallenge would be complete without taking some time to fall deeper in love with God’s word. To celebrate his eternal and everlasting word. That we might come to proclaim: “Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long.”

Loving God’s word begins with reading his word, the Bible. Reading begetsĀ meditating, obeying, rejoicing in and celebrating his presence and his promises.

More Posts in the #LoveChallenge Series