Monday – October 23
Approaching God As we think about the concept of “Always Reforming,” of living a life that continues to change because we are in step with the Spirit, we have to ask, “How do we live in that kind of fluidity?” How do our human hearts stay soft in the face of animosity and relational separation? Paul reveals an answer in his battle in the Corinthian church when he says:
“So I will very gladly spend for you everything I have and expend myself as well. If I love you more, will you love me less?” (2 Corinthians 12:15)
Love that always being reformed is not limited by the human response to that love. We are to love for the sake of the One who loved us first.
Listening to God God’s love has never been based on the response of His creation. He created because He is love. He watched us fall to sin because He is love. He paved the way back to Him, through Jesus Christ’s work on the cross, because He is love. It is true:
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3: 16)
We cannot do anything for God that will make Him love us more. But we also cannot do anything against God that will make Him love us less. He loves because it is His nature!
Talking to God To turn from a game stopper with a hardened and bitter heart to a game changer who is living in the everlasting love of God, we must believe in and receive the unchanging, unfailing love of God that is only acquired through the gift of faith given to us by God. This gift of faith opens our eyes to see that Jesus is the way, the truth. and the life; He is the only way to the Father. We can be supernaturally transformed from “stone hearted” to “heart of flesh” (see Ezekiel 36:25-27).
Responding to God So how does God’s reforming love change a person? In a world that is growing darker, angrier, and more bitter, God’s love becomes even more important. Ask yourself: “Am I growing more and more in love with God and people?” God’s love can transform you. Amid the greatest difficulties, the world is amazed at the response of love that comes from those who truly have received God’s love.
Surrendering to God “Lord, I see the world around me becoming more angry, hateful, and bitter. I see the struggle in my own heart because of the things that I am going through. You once said that I must become like a little child to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Here am I, a little child hurt and bruised. Please come and minister to my heart so that I may turn around and minister to others who are hurting.”
By Wayne Ondersma[/fusion_text][fusion_text]
[bctt tweet=”We cannot do anything for God that will make Him love us more.”][/fusion_text][fusion_text]
[bctt tweet=”We also cannot do anything against God that will make Him love us less.”][/fusion_text][fusion_text]
This devotional is called “Always Reforming: Celebrating 500 Years of Being Made New” and will culminate in a combined service at Cutlerville East CRC on October 29 at 5 PM. Rev. Stan Mast is scheduled to preach at that service.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][fusion_builder_column type=”1_3″ layout=”1_3″ spacing=”” center_content=”no” hover_type=”none” link=”” min_height=”” hide_on_mobile=”small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility” class=”” id=”” background_color=”#f9f9f9″ background_image=”” background_position=”left top” undefined=”” background_repeat=”no-repeat” border_size=”0″ border_color=”” border_style=”solid” border_position=”all” padding=”20 20 20 20″ margin_top=”” margin_bottom=”” animation_type=”slide” animation_direction=”right” animation_speed=”0.6″ animation_offset=”” last=”no”][fusion_imageframe image_id=”9308″ style_type=”none” stylecolor=”” hover_type=”none” bordersize=”” bordercolor=”” borderradius=”” align=”center” lightbox=”no” gallery_id=”” lightbox_image=”” alt=”” link=”” linktarget=”_self” hide_on_mobile=”small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility” class=”” id=”” animation_type=”” animation_direction=”left” animation_speed=”0.3″ animation_offset=””]http://onefaithmanyfaces.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/AlwaysReformingLogoARTZ-2000×2000.png[/fusion_imageframe][fusion_text]
A HISTORICAL SIDEBAR
During the 16th century the city of Geneva became an important refugee center for persecuted Protestants throughout Europe. This caused Geneva’s population to double in the 1550s. Many of the refugees came from France since Geneva was a French-speaking city. Emboldened by the ministry of the Reformed churches, many received training from John Calvin in theology, preaching, and moral character and returned to France and other countries to share the gospel. Ministry was happening in Geneva so that it could continue to happen in other European cities.[/fusion_text][/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]