While he was still speaking, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and behold, a voice out of the cloud said, “This is My beloved Son, with whom I am well-pleased; listen to Him!”
When we speak of The Beloved, we speak of Jesus Christ. In scripture, God called referred to Jesus, His son as His Beloved. In turn, Jesus Christ called those that he blessed and and brought to faith his own beloveds.
For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son,
We all want to be loved; loved completely as we are in this moment. No matter what we carry in our hearts, what concerns we have or what stories we may hold onto, or be silently running from- we desire to be loved now, held dearly onto in this and and every moment. We all share the soft human desire to be comforted and cared for. We were born with a longing for Love, with a soul inborn that carried the image of and the wondrous imprint of our Creator.
Human Love and the Love of God are very difference experiences and routes to “filling” our hearts with the lifelong quest that we all face with our relationship with ourselves, others, our communities, work and ultimately our Creator; how we see and know God.
Life in the times that we live in can sidetrack us into striving in every direction but that which will truly fill us in a lasting way.
I am reminded of a story of a tree that I heard. This beautiful tree was growing in good soil reaching towards the sun. It’s roots were growing down into the earth and expanding as it grew. Seasons came and went; some had rain and then sometimes the earth grew parched and the roots had no moisture to absorb and then the tree would grow weak, the branches low, leaves fell off. It was very difficult for this tree to depend on the unpredictability of rain, and no ability to store it for long in the root system for survival. The predicament of this young tree is similar to mortal life. There is no eternal source of mortal “supply” that can assure that your roots will be filled.
The only Power that can Fill us up and assure that we can weather the dry spells and the storms of life is God. For this beautiful tree, The Holy Spirit, God’s able and powerful Perfection of love working on His behalf has the ability to infuse a River of Living Waters into the Tree and its roots,
deep into the earth, that they, all is soaked by Spirit, by God’s Mercy and Grace with no end.
Now the Tree belongs to God’s Kingdom. It will never thirst. The roots will never be dry because they are not dependent upon the external world for their nourishment. This tree will not only thrive, it will provide shade, fruit and encouragement for others.
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.
The greatest commandment that Christ Jesus gave was for us to love one another as He loved us. As a deepening understanding of the Nature of Christ saturates the heart, there comes a recognition of the vast difference between our mortal nature and the coverings that have grown to in-case us and the kind of heart that Jesus is asking us to grow.
We do though become new beings as Christians, lives alter dramatically in the power of abiding in Christ. Little by little we find parts of our hearts re-formed. It is almost like watching the older, outer petals of a rose that are no longer needed, fall away as the new ones form at the core arise with beauty and vibrancy and amazing galore.
As Love is poured so generously into our own hearts and lives by Lord Jesus and The Power of The Holy Spirit, that fullness reached to a joy and sense of overflow that it must pour out. It is The Lord’s feast. It must be shared with one another. It is his commandment and a most beautiful fulfillment of his Gift.
Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his steadfast love endures forever.
When we long to know The Lord, we need to discover His greatest gift; His Word. The Bible is God’s Word. Reading the Bible with care and a genuine desire to absorb The Gospel is the beginning of an amazing life altering journey.
And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.
The Holy Bible
A noted Pastor of the 20th Century Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones (Dec 20 1899 – March 1 – 1981) that was the minister of the Westminster chapel in London said:
“We must have confidence and assurance! In what? In the Bible as the Word of God. Why? Because it is God’s Word, because it is God’s revelation; because it is not the theories and the ideas of men with respect to the truth; because it is not what men have discovered and arrived at as the result of their great study and scholarship and meditation.
It is what the living God has revealed to men, has shown them, and has commanded them to preach. Let us remember Martin Luther’s contrast between philosophy and revelation. He puts it like this: “Philosophy has to do with what can be known by human reason. Theology has to do with that which is ‘believed,’ with that which is apprehended by faith.”
This is God’s Word, this is God’s truth. This is from heaven, not from men and it is therefore invincible. We must learn to say what this great apostle said in his Epistle to the Galatians in the first chapter: “Though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed’ (verse 8). “I marvel that ye are so soon removed from him that called you into the grace of God unto another gospel: which is not another; but there be some that trouble you, and would pervert the gospel of Christ” (verse 6). ‘I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached by me is not after man. For I neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ’ (verses 11-12). “A dispensation of the gospel,’ he says to the Corinthians and to others, has been ‘committed unto me’ (1 Corinthians 9:17).”
When we discover God, we find our true nature for He is our Creator. The Peace of being reunited with the One that truly Loves you in a way so vast and Eternal is life-altering. It the most profound and miraculous Gift that we can receive. It lies waiting for each of us like a seed in our hearts. We only need to listen, to respond and to receive peace of God’s Call. Life turns over. Love enters. A relationship begins that will give life a new birth. We find The Beloved that has been seeking us.
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
My Pastor asks a Question
My Pastor, Tom Holliday from Alexandria Presbyterian Church asked us recently, “Who would you be willing to lay down your life for?. Do you know anyone that would be willing to lay their life down for you?” My heart beat quickly and gave me the answer to both questions. Yes. And Yes. Because I have been so deeply loved by God, I would pour that without limit for someone else. I have many brother and sisters in Christ and there are more that do not yet know him; I would lay down my life for them to bring them into His Love and preserve the Love that I have for them for all eternity.
- note: time has passed since writing this and surely the Lord tests everything that you say and commit to. There are tests of Faith that increase. But in time that tree has stronger roots and grows taller, able to baske those high branches in the Light of His Shining Face. The resources of The Holy Spirit run deep. A trial may be more difficult but the resources In Christ are stronger so my answer, though less innocent- is the same.
- It is challenging to be Christian in a World that faces crises and challenges in every aspect of life, heart, culture, history, global concerns and the intradimensional aspects of powers that move through systems that we all may or may not even know are in play.
How do we become Christian? When we believe and have faith that we can receive Grace from Jesus Christ that is the moment that we open to our Christian experience. The Lord is waiting, desiring and watching over you with a pursuing Love that is prepared for the moment that you utter the word, or make that shift in your heart and mean it when you say or pray for Faith in Him.
It is that simple. It starts with, “I believe in you, Jesus Christ. Save me. Search my heart and help me to receive all the love that you have to give to me. I have faith in you. Increase my faith.” Amen
Jesus Chris offers a free gift of Grace when you believe. You receive a “new life, a new heart” and are reborn into life in Christ. That is what the word Christian means. When you declare your Faith the Righteousness of Christ is given to you and you receive compete forgiveness and experience the Mercy of His Love. This is why it is describes that people receive a “new heart” when they are born to Christ. The mortal ‘past’ recedes and the new spiritual heart is opened to birth.
I went to my Church Website for this precise explanation of “A Christian”
What is a Christian?
A Christian is someone who…
Has answered the call of Salvation. If you’ve accepted God’s gift of salvation, how has your life changed? Do you have the marks of a follower of Jesus Christ, a Christian? If so, your life will be characterized by love for others and obedience to God’s Word. 1 John 2:4-6 says, “Whoever says, ‘I know him,’ but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person. But if anyone obeys his word, love for God is truly made complete in them. This is how we know we are in him: Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did.”
a Christian is someone who…
has been born again by God (John 3:3; John 3:7; 1 Peter 1:23) and has put faith and trust in Jesus Christ. Ephesians 2:8 tells us that it is “…by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.”
A true Christian is a person who…
has put faith and trust in the person and work of Jesus Christ, including His death on the cross as payment for sins and His resurrection on the third day. John 1:12 tells us, “Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.” The mark of a true Christian is love for others and obedience to God’s Word (1 John 2:4, 10). A true Christian is indeed a child of God, a part of God’s true family, and one who has been given new life in Jesus Christ.
and admits that they’re a member of the human race; a sinner; “All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)
and has realized that there are consequences to their sin in this life and for eternity; “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” & “God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 6:23 & 5:8)
A Christian has…
accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior (repented of their sins and committed their life for Jesus Christ); “If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.” (Romans 10:9-10)
~My prayer is that you know the Love of God and allow your heart to be cradled by His joyful, infallible and unrelenting Mercy that rushes to you in this moment.