Dear Friends, I want to share my heart with you in what I am learning in my own faith journey with our Father, God. I raised my children on a motto: "Life is all about choices. Choices have consequences, so make good choices."
They heard it from me so frequently that often as they were heading out the door, I would start to remind them of our family motto, but before I could finish it, they would finish it for me. This was in their mind, and I saw it as a great preparation for the battle they were about to face as they ventured into the world. We have an enemy, and the battleground is our mind. He stands ever ready to sow us his lies and tempt us to choose that which we ought never choose. So, our Friedmann family was right. It was good and true. God Himself affirms in His Word that we reap what we sow. But what Father has been faith to show me is that our family motto was elementary, overly simplistic and void of a deeper understanding of Who God is and who we are to Him. What my family motto lacked was an entering into and living in the glory of the love of and from God.
FEAR OF CONSEQUENCES
Very often when I am tempted, it is the fear of consequence that keeps me from making the wrong decision. The problem with this, is that sometimes I am willing to risk the consequence, or mistakenly believe the consequence will not occur and end up making the wrong decision, fooling myself in a kind of spiritual Russian roulette that leaves God totally out of the equation. To be blunt and make this very clear, such an economy for decision making is just plain base – earthy, manipulative, controlling, selfish, and very, very fleshly.
Several months ago, after making a stupid choice and dreading the consequences that were soon to come, the Holy Spirit spoke gently to my heart about this economy I was living in. He said, “Your fear of consequences motivates your decision making more than your love for Me.” My heart was instantly pierced with this very well aimed and loving arrow from the heart of the One Who loves me so much and searches our hearts for anything that might be hurtful or inadequate in our lives (Psalm 139.) Having captured my attention, He then brought to my mind this verse from II Cor 5:14, “For it is the love of Christ that compels us…”
Are you hearing what this verse is telling us? When our hearts and minds are truly stunned by how much we are loved, then the love we have received will “compel us”. The word compel is “sunexo” and it means to powerfully urge a corresponding response. In other words, as we come to know how loved we are, that in turn will usher in a love for Jesus that is so powerful it will become the supreme dynamic in our decision making. Put simply, the choices we make will be because we love Jesus and not because we have a fear of consequences.
With a thankful heart, I apologized to our Father for my less than stellar motives in my decision making. I am in fact pondering a new motto for myself and my children. It goes something like this:
Life is all about how much God loves us, and how we can now
love Him back through the choices we make. Make the choice
to love Him Who loves us so!
Now that is a motto to live by.
Dear Ones, may our Father open the eyes of your understanding, granting you power of the Holy Spirit, to break through your finite and earthy thinking, that you by His strength will be able to comprehend the height, length, breadth and depth of His love for you, which is beyond our understanding, that we may be filled to overflowing with the God Who is love. And may His love devastate you, overwhelm you, drive and compel you to love Him, and all those who cross your path as your journey through this world.