living love

by Pastor Mark

“My dear children, let’s not just talk about love; let’s practice real love. This is the only way we’ll know we’re living truly, living in God’s reality. It’s also the way to shut down debilitating self-criticism, even when there is something to it. For God is greater than our worried hearts and knows more about us than we do ourselves.” (1 John3:18-20, MSG)

Today’s passage is one of those that really strikes me, particularly the phrase about shutting down debilitating self-criticism. We all have an internal dialogue where we process our thoughts and feelings. Frequently. That dialogue goes negative. In some ways it can serve as a defense mechanism to help us prepare for the worst and hope for the best, but it can easily get the best of us. If we live in the realm of stinkin’ thinkin’ too long, that inner dialogue can sour our perspective and cause us to lose hope and dash faith.

God wants you to live in His reality, which is loving grace. That isn’t just a state of mind, but the entire Kingdom. Sure, there might be something to some of the self-criticism that weighs you down, but God wants you to look beyond your limitations to the limitless power of His love available in Jesus Christ. God knows more about you than you know about yourself, and loves you with a complete and saving love.

Allow that knowledge to welcome you into God’s kingdom right now to help you practice real love in every aspect of your life. And that includes the thoughts that fill you inner dialogue.

Prayer: Dear Lord, thank you for the reality of your love, the state of being into which you want me to live. Forgive me for the times I allow my thoughts to cause me to feel I’m not worthy of your real love. Help me to sift my thoughts and feelings through your love, so I may rest easily in you, even when my heart is worried. I pray this in Jesus’ name. Amen.