JESUS LOVES YOU
A lot of so-called evangelists try to use fear to bring people to Jesus; but the truth is that fear is not of God. It is of the enemy. Love is of God. He loves us as we are right now. There is no one who is an exception to that love. He did not die for just some special bunch of people. He laid down His life for each one of us as well as for all of us.
Each one of us is precious to Him. He knows us all by name. He loves each one of us as a particular person and not simply some generality called love. He called you by name before He said, "Let there be light." and I believe He said when He called us, "I love you."
LOVE IS NOT INDULGENCE
The question might be asked, "What does it mean for Jesus to love us? Does that mean that He will give us what we want?" No, that would not be love. That would be indulgence. That would be letting us be God so that we could tell Him what to do. Love is letting God be God, and letting us be His children.
The truth is that we dont really know what we want until we get it. There are many people who work hard all their lives and fail to get what they want. They will get what they think they want, and they will find out, thats not what they really want. "It is not what I thought it would be like at all." God knows our inward thoughts and feelings better than we do ourselves.
LOVE IS NOT BENEVOLENCE
We might ask, "Well if God loves us and knows what we really want, why doesnt He give it to us?" Love cannot be imposed on people. It must be received. That is one of the reasons why some people do not know that God loves them. Even if I know what is best for you, I cannot impose it and call it love. Love gives freedom to both the giver and the receiver.
If I impose on you what is best for your life, I take away your freedom to be a person. I make you a robot at best. Love must be offered by the giver and received by the one to whom it is given. That is the nature of life in the Kingdom of God.
LOVE IS FREELY GIVEN AND FREELY RECEIVED
Love is the way Jesus dealt with the people whom He encountered daily. He healed those who were willing to be healed. He didnt give them all that they thought they wanted, but He offered them the love that Father had sent Him to give us. That is the nature of God, Our Father. The love that we see incarnate in Jesus is Our Fathers love.
The love God has for all of us is a love that comes to us and waits for us to open to Him. The prayer we need to pray is the One Jesus taught us to pray. We pray to Our Father, who is in heaven, whose name is
THE LORDS PRAYER
The Lords prayer is a prayer for the Kingdom to come so we might live in it now. Jesus told us it is at hand. As we see the power of Gods love manifested in the world, He says, "Certainly the Kingdom of God has come upon you."
We pray to Our Father. He is not just mine, but He is mine. He is not just yours, but He is yours too. He is not bound up in time and space like we are. He lives beyond time and space, and His Name is Holy, and so we pray, "Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy Name."
We pray for His Kingdom to come fully revealed so we can see His love. We pray, "Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven." We pray for His love to come, to be given, to be received so that His will might be done, and we might all know what it is like to live in the presence of Our Father all the time, in love that sets us free to become all that we are meant to be.
We pray, "Give us this day our daily bread." That is not simply the bread that we eat to keep on keeping on in this life. That is the Bread of Heaven also that is our food and drink to grow up into the Kingdom, as we are fed heavenly food.
We pray, "Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us." Forgiveness is not just excusing someone for what they have done to us. It is accepting them as they are instead of as we expected them to be.
If we dont forgive them, we are bound to them, and they influence every decision that we make. We are not free to receive from God until we have released the grip that we have on those we refuse to forgive.
It sounds funny to talk about forgiving God, but the truth is that we get angry at God when He doesnt meet our expectations. It doesnt mean He has done something wrong. It means we were counting on something we didnt see. When we dont forgive God for not meeting our expectations, we are not able to hear what He says to us, and we miss the Kingdom.
When we do forgive God, we can then ask Him for His Holy Spirit to come and lead us where He wants us to walk with Him. When we are obedient to Him as our King, we are living in His Kingdom now.
Until we know Gods will for us, we cannot be tempted as Jesus was tempted because we only know the wisdom of the world. When we come to know God, we can be tempted to follow the wisdom of the world, and not God. We will be tempted and seek to follow the evil one, and miss the will of God for our lives.
When we see what we are praying, we can then pray from our hearts, "Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be Thy Name. Thy Kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us. Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil . For thine is the Kingdom and the power and the glory forever and ever. Amen." And we come to know the love of God.To Fr Al's Main Page