Tag Archives: salvation

Throwback Thursday: Sacrificial Love

SACRIFICIAL LOVE

By Carolyn Dale Newell

 

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son,

That whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

John 3:16 (NKJV)

Why did Jesus Christ come into this world, suffer and die, rise on the third day, and give us eternal life? The answer: “For God so loved”. John used the word “so” because there is no word that rightly describes the depth of God’s love. It is an unconditional love we cannot fathom.

He loved us when we were unlovable. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Rom. 5:8). We did nothing to deserve His love. We could never do enough good works to earn it.

How can Christians receive such a gift from God and not show love to an unsaved world? In Mark 10:21, Jesus loved the self-righteous, rich, young ruler who was unsaved. Surely, if Jesus loved a man who was not saved, shouldn’t we do likewise?  In Matt. 5:43-45, Jesus tells us to love our neighbors and our enemies. This love is not an emotion. It is a choice to sacrifice time and show kindness towards them. If we love our neighbor as we love ourselves, then we take care of them as we would take care of ourselves.

The parable of “The Good Samaritan”) Luke 10:25-37) explains that a neighbor can be anyone that we come in contact with. The Jews and Samaritans hated each other. We may not even like the person, but if we don’t show God’s love to them, they may never see it. We should learn from that parable to love ALL people: the dirty homeless person, the unwed mother, the person blinded by a false religion, and homosexuals. They are all sinners in need of God’s grace, as we once were. Share the love that God has bestowed upon you with someone today.

Dear Lord,

Help us to love that particular person that we find so hard to love. Forgive us for prejudice and help us show them Your love. Prepare them for the gospel message that they may be saved. In Jesus ‘name, amen.

DIG DEEPER

Read about the Good Samaritan in Luke 10:25-37.

HIKING THE TRAIL

Is there a particular person that you need to show the love of God to? It may be an enemy or a person that simply annoys you. Make a point to show them an act of kindness and begin praying for them this week.

 

Copyright 2015 Carolyn Dale Newell.

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Guide Dog Tales: Come Close

Come Close

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Matthew 11:28 NKJV

Two of Iva’s many commands are “Come” and “Close”.” “Come is reserved for times when she is off-leash, and I need her to come to me. “Close” is usually used when she is on her leash, and I want to draw her close to my body in order to position her in a “Sit” and “Down” to tuck her out of the way. For instance, I use it while I sit on the bench at Walmart, waiting for my husband. I like to keep her from laying in the busy aisle.

One Sunday, at church, as I headed to the altar, I noticed Iva’s pace was much faster than normal. Normal for church that is. Then I realized why. My pastor was saying, “Come…come.” Iva thought Pastor Ray was calling her to come to him. But Pastor Ray’s invitation was an extension of the authoritative call to repentance from Jesus Christ found in the above verse.

Jesus welcomed all to come to Him, those who labored under sin’s burden. Those who were heavy laden under hundreds of Jewish manmade laws that had been added to the laws of God. Those who were weary from the burdens of life. “Come to Me,” said Jesus, “and I will give you rest.” Rest from sin’s power. Rest from sin’s penalty. Rest from our heavy load. Rest from the burdens of religious leaders.

Do you need His rest today? Most of us live overloaded schedules and find little time for rest. Why is that? Could it be that we haven’t heeded Jesus’ call to come to Him? Are you living a life under the reign of sin? Jesus says, “Come!” Go to Him with a repentant heart.

Maybe like the Jews in Jesus’ day, you have religion, but you don’t have the relationship. Many denominations, churches, and people are still depending on good works. Works won’t get you to heaven, but the rest Jesus offers will.

Perhaps, you have the right relationship with Christ, but the troubles of life weigh you down. Those are the moments when we need to come close. We need to get in the presence of our Father. We cannot burn the candle at both ends and expect the rest Jesus promised when we have little time for Him. Get in the presence of Jesus.

Do we rush to the Lord with heightened expectancy like Iva scurried to Pastor Ray? Do we linger in the presence of the Holy Spirit soaking in His anointing, His blessings, His grace, His peace, and His joy?

Sweet friend, we have to seek the presence Of Jesus if we long for His rest. He desires to help us carry the load, but we must be close enough for Him to do it.

Go to the Lord in prayer. He is calling you. Seek Him, and give Him all those burdens you have tried handling on your own. Give them to the one who cares for you.

casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. (1 Pet. 5:7)

Copyright 2019 Carolyn Dale Newell.