Dying to Love - Encouragement Café - February 6, 2017

Dying to Love
By Paris Renae

Monday February 6, 2017

“Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins.” 1 Peter 4:8 (NIV)

Fear is a companion, but not a welcome one. Fear, worry, doubt, dread – words that certainly don’t cheer me up but at times are apt descriptions of where I’m living.

Ever noticed fear is often accompanied by comparison? Her kids don’t have the issues my kids have. They don’t have to worry because they have plenty of money, or family, or good looks, or parents who are still alive, or – on and on it goes. But fear is a jail, a trap, handcuffs on our love life.

When I let Jesus’ love wash over me, the traps open free. When I love others more than judge them, the cell doors no longer lock me in.

Today’s verse says ‘above all – love – deeply – cover over those missed marks we aimed for and failed at’ – my paraphrase. I can only love deeply because Jesus loves me so very deeply. I can hardly turn a page in the New Testament without reading of His love.

I want to be a living book like that. As my pages turn, I want others to be able to look back and see love. I want to run free in the mercy shown me and delight in the grace given me. Running free enables me to run over with much more grace to others than my tight little cages of ‘what ifs’ and ‘should haves’ ever could.

Today, I want to die-to-self who frets, and wake up to deeply love in a way that makes a difference. A difference in me and a difference in the lives of those whose path I cross.

2 Peter 1:3 says “His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and goodness.” It’s ours, we are called – and it isn’t a calling to fall daily into the bondage of comparison or worry. Rather a call to fall into the arms of a Savior who reminds us that, with His Father, NOTHING is impossible.

Surely if we believe eternity awaits – with no sorrow – then we can begin to live (one day at a time) loving, so the multitude of our sin - and those we perceive of others - isn’t our focus. Then our companion is no longer fear, but our Savior.

This is a lifelong process, dearly beloved. You – and me – we are a work in progress. Join me today in seeing with new eyes as we die-to-self and live-to-love.

Oh, sweet and patient Father, Your example of love overwhelms us. May it also overtake us that we can live in the freedom You died to give us and so that we can overflow it to those all around us. May Your story be always amazing to us and please give us the strength to try and live it for You – taking many with us as You enable. In Jesus’ Name Amen

© 2017 by Paris Renae,  All rights reserved.

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Originally published Monday, 06 February 2017.