Tuesday, June 3, 2008

The Priority is LOVE

During the last several weeks, our Ladies Bible Study went through a DVD series by 5 different women speakers. One of the speakers was Beth Moore. After having the opportunity to go to a Beth Moore Conference in March, I have grown to love her style of teaching, and how she presents the Gospel message in a clear and to-the-point kind of way. (The only think my husband doesn't like when I listen to Beth Moore is that for some reason I pick up her accent after I've heard her speak... say this with a Southern accent, "I need me some JESUS!" I love her voice, but I suppose it suits her better than me..... it just happens!)

One of Beth's messages was on LOVE. Here are some of the thoughts that I took away from her message....

One of the hardest things in life is rejection. And the only way to feel rejection is if we have first loved someone. All we need to create an environment for rejection is relationship. Jesus was rejected by his own people (John 1:11 - He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him.) So, Jesus knows how we feel when other people hurt us.

Rejection can wound deeper and last longer than hosts of other injuries. It can also tempt us to invite things into our lives that we never dreamed we would have welcomed, and cause us to act in ways we never dreamed of behaving.

When we feel rejected, we sometimes take 2 very erroneous actions... first, we want to recover what rejected us (I want it back), and secondly we want to reject who/what rejected us. (we want revenge, but it won't work). Nothing makes the fool of us that rejection does.

There is life after rejection. Rejection gives us the perfect opportunity to fellowship in the sufferings of Christ... he KNOWS how we feel. Sometimes rejection on one hand leads to reconciliation on the other hand.

If someone rejects you for your belief in Christ, Christ takes it personally, and HE will deal with it... let him.

Through all our life long, we need to remember the Sovereignty of God... Romans 11:15 For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead?

And the other is the Supremacy of God.

The Stone the builders rejected has become the Cornerstone... you are a chosen generation. God is in CONTROL of all things.

In 1 Samuel, the people of Israel demanded a King so they could be like the other Nations... but the LAST thing God wants is for us to be like everybody else. Be set apart.... 1 Samuel 8:7 And the LORD told him: "Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king.

The word rejection appears 120 times in the Bible, and many of those times are referring to the rejection of Jesus Christ. When you feel rejected, don't think for a minute that nobody feels your pain... Jesus does, and he is where you will find healing for your hurts, as well.

We will not be hurt if we do not love, but we are commanded to love one another. There are so many verses in the Bible where love overcomes hurts and pain, perfect love drives out fear (1 John 4:18) God is love (1 John 4:16) 1 Cor. 13:4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.

And the last one, which may be the hardest, is Luke 6:35 which tells us "But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked."

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