This past week has really been about love for me. I don't know about you but I want to love God more! I want to be so deeply and passionately in love with our Savior that he is ALWAYS on my mind. Yesterday, on the way home from CrossFit at 7am, I was praying that God would show me how to love him more. After Logan got off to school and while Macy was eating breakfast, I sat down to do my reading for our small group. Our group is currently working through "Crazy Love" by Francis Chan. Wouldn't you know that this week's chapter is "When You're in Love"? More than just a coincidence in my book:) In the book, Francis Chan includes an excerpt from "God is the Gospel" by John Piper. It reads:
"The critical question for our generation- and for every generation- is this: If you could go to heaven, with no sickness, and with all the friends you ever had on earth, and all the food you ever liked, and all the leisure activities you ever enjoyed, and all the natural beauties you ever saw, all the physical pleasures you ever tasted, and no human conflict or any natural disasters, could you be satisfied with heaven, if Christ was not there?"
Wow. That's a good question. It reminded me of another similar question I read just last week in "Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World" by Joanna Weaver.
"A Test of Love
St. Augustine once preached a sermon in which he proposed a kind of self-test to see if we truly love God:
'Suppose God proposed to you a deal and said, "I will give you anything you want. You can possess the whole world. Nothing will be impossible for you...Nothing will be a sin, nothing forbidden. You will never die, never have pain, never have anything you do not want and always have anything you do want- except for just one thing: you will never see my face."
Augustine closed with a question:
'Did a chill rise in your hearts, when you heard the words, "you will never see my face?" That chill is the most precious thing in you; that is the pure love of God."
Again, wow. I hope you felt that chill. That you desperately long to see the face of Jesus.
As I read further into the chapter "When You're in Love" Francis Chan offers this encouragement, "The fact is this, I need God to help me love God........It is a remarkable cycle: Our prayers for more love result in love, which naturally causes us to pray more, which results in more love."
I don't even know what to say....
I guess that leads me to my next verse. I have chosen to memorize Ephesians 3:17-19. I have loved this verse for a long time and I pray it for myself, Derek and our children. But, as I memorize it over the next couple of weeks I am going to pray it for you too. I pray that you may fall deeper and deeper in love, and that you will be filled with the fullness of God.
Ephesians 3:17-19 (New Century Version)
17 I pray that Christ will live in your hearts by faith and that your life will be strong in love and be built on love.18 And I pray that you and all God's holy people will have the power to understand the greatness of Christ's love—how wide and how long and how high and how deep that love is.19 Christ's love is greater than anyone can ever know, but I pray that you will be able to know that love. Then you can be filled with the fullness of God.