Is it possible in the busyness of life, the pain of our own brokenness, and even in living a life of love, to just enjoy being LOVED by God? Among the works Christ has planned for us what does it look like to find rest? Are we only loved so we can love others? What if we are primarily loved because we are loved? Could God's love for us be an end in itself rather than always for the purpose of our response? Perhaps this is where we would find rest - drawing aside, pausing, taking intermissions to regularly rest in His love!
Reading through Ephesians it is pretty easy to formulate a list of what a life that is YES to God looks like. But what if it's not a list? What if it's more like a portrait, a masterpiece in the making? And what if instead of it being burdensome, a life that is YES to God is actually one of rest?
What defines you - who you are or what you do? Does what we do determine who we are or is it who we are that produces what we do?
If we are indeed new creations and have become YES to God what's going on when we don't act like it? Its time to not lose heart but to stand firm in front of the mirror and see ourselves as our Father in heaven does - as a much loved daughter or son who is forgiven, accepted and good!
Living a life that is YES to God is a battle because we live in a world and have a nature that is NO to God. This InLife Sunday Campbell and Andrew had a conversation around this and the conflict that each of us has between being YES or NO to God.
When Jesus arrives on the planet he receives a big ‘NO’ from his most loved creation, humanity. They not only do not recognise him, they fully reject him. Why? And why do we often choose to be ‘NO’ to this One who made us and loves us so deeply?
Often when we talk about loving God its in the emotionnal sense, but God calls us not only to Love Him with our hearts but all of ourselves including our answers in reponse to His voice and direction. To love God in the practical sense is to obey Him, Jesus called His disciples to show their love for God by obeying His commands, to live a life of 'yes' to God.
The birth of the church, known as Pentecost, occured at the Jewish Feast of Weeks. This was a celebration of the generosity of God in the Wheat Harvest. This generosity was once again experienced on the day of Pentecost; in the new gift of the Holy Spirit to the followers of Jesus. It produced an amazing response from the first Church ... "God's grace powerfully at work". (Leviticus 23, John 6 and Acts 1-4)