Can you describe your marriage? Is it red hot, lukewarm, or just plain cold to the touch? Many divorces occur simply because spouses are too busy to pay attention to their love temperatures. The same can be said about our love for the Lord. When was the last time you felt excited to spend time with God? Can you recall a recent time when God did something amazing for you? If you struggle to answer, then you might need to take your temperature and begin rekindling your first love, because scripture tells us Jesus is paying attention.
“Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love…I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth.”
(Revelation 2:4 and 3:15-16).
First Love is Not Just About Jesus
That’s sounds so wrong. Isn’t Jesus supposed to be our first love? Yes he is, but not just him and here’s why.
This morning, I took a brief glance at the headlines from around the world and this is what I saw…
As I switched computer screens to begin writing, these headlines still rattling through my mind, I asked God, “What do you want me to tell them today?” He said, “Tell them I love them,” and immediately a Bible verse came to mind. Read more
If You Bring It To God
On October 11 in my daily devotional,* there is a poem about evaluating our lives. It reads,
Measure your life by loss and not by gain,
Not by the wine drunk but by the wine poured forth.
For love’s strength is found in love’s sacrifice,
And he who suffers most has most to give.
Wow, this is so deep when we take a moment to measure our losses compared to our gains. Answering these questions, let’s think about where we’ve grown the most emotionally and spiritually.
- Which taught us the greatest lessons?
- What produced the most intense closeness with God?
- Which built our level of faith to trust God during a future loss?
- Did loss or gain increase our compassion for others?
This is Part 3 of a 3-part series in which I describe the 3 biggest temptations used by the devil to shake our faith. If you haven’t read Part 1 and 2, you can begin reading them at The Three Biggest Temptations, Part 1.
Finishing up our series, we are drawing wisdom from Matthew 4:1-11 from Jesus’ own wilderness experience.
Looking Back For Just A Minute
Falling for the first temptation is to believe we’re only physical beings; that there isn’t a spiritual side to our lives. The devil tries to convince us to forget God and do things on our own. If that doesn’t work, then the 2nd temptation tries to get us to doubt God and His Word. Will God really take care of us? Can His Word be trusted? When we still don’t fall, the devil moves to his final temptation.
This is Part 2 of a 3-part series in which I describe the 3 biggest temptations used by the devil to shake our faith. If you haven’t read Part 1, you can read the introduction and about the first temptation at The Three Biggest Temptations, Part 1. Continuing our series, we are drawing wisdom from Matthew 4:1-11 from Jesus’ own wilderness experience.
Looking Back For Just A Minute
Boy, could you relate to the first temptation to do things on your own and forget you need God? I sure could. I’m a fixer by nature and when I see a problem, I do my level best to fix it. Furrowing my brow, I put on my “I can do this by myself” cap, and try solving the issue. It’s not until after discovering another stress wrinkle and developing a headache that I realize I can’t fix it. I remember once again how much I need God in my life and so, I say sorry and ask for His solution.
We all want to do great things for God. As Christians, our deepest desire should be to tell others about Him, to reach those who don’t yet know Him as Lord and Savior. But before God can fully trust us with this task, we must be tested. Jesus came to earth to accomplish the greatest mission in history; he came to die so we could inherit heaven, but even the Son of God had to be tested. In this 3-part series, I will describe the 3 biggest temptations used by the devil to knock us off our mission. Drawing wisdom from Matthew 4:1-11, we can learn from Jesus’ own wilderness experience.
Adam Failed His Test
To understand Matthew 4, we must travel back to Genesis 2 where God gave the first man, Adam, his mission.