Saved by the lyrics, or by Love?

Love image

So, here I am, four hours past due time to post on my blog, and my virtual story world is turning up just empty. I should be posting on Love today like I do all Thursdays, and I didn’t know what to write. Offering a snappy prayer of guidance, I clicked Microsoft Word and the answer sailed right in.

Love them like Jesus by Casting Crowns. Now, I didn’t seek permission to share this lyrics, and apologies to affected parties, but this is saving me today. So, here goes, Love them like Jesus lyrics:

The love of her life is drifting away
They’re losing the fight for another day
The life that she’s known is falling apart
A fatherless home, a child’s broken heart

You’re holding her hand, you’re straining for words
You trying to make – sense of it all
She’s desperate for hope, darkness clouding her view
She’s looking to you

Just love her like Jesus, carry her to Him
His yoke is easy, His burden is light
You don’t need the answers to all of life’s questions
Just know that He loves her and stay by her side
Love her like Jesus
Love her like Jesus

The gifts lie in wait, in a room painted blue
Little blessing from Heaven would be there soon
Hope fades in the night, blue skies turn to gray
As the little one slips away

You’re holding her hand, you’re straining for words
You’re trying to make sense of it all
They’re desperate for hope, darkness clouding their view
They’re looking to you

Just love them like Jesus, carry them to Him
His yoke is easy, His burden is light
You don’t need the answers to all of life’s questions
Just know that He loves them and stay by their side
Love them like Jesus

Lord of all creation holds our lives in His hands
The God of all the nations holds our lives in His hands
The Rock of our salvation holds our lives in His hands
He cares for them just as He cares for you

So love them like Jesus, love them like Jesus
You don’t need the answers to all of life’s questions
Just know that He loves them and stay by their side
Love them like Jesus
Love them like Jesus

After-note: I really should lay emphasis on ‘You don’t need the answers to all of life’s questions. Just know that He loves them and stay by their side. Love them like Jesus.’ That’s the point of it all. The struggles we go through, temptations that arise like waves on the Pacific as a result of our faith. Love alone is what makes sense. It’s what made Jesus save us. It’s why the Word says ‘for God is Love.’ I once told a friend that the simplest things in life are the most complicated. Same goes for Love. It’s the easiest thing to do, yet we find it so hard. Trust me, I’ve had my own share.

But, no matter what we think, only a relationship, an interaction and a community rooted in Love would stand the test of trials and temptations. So, let’s go show the world Love… Feel free to leave comments and notes. BTW, this is the link to ‘Love them like Jesus’ on Youtube. I’m not really efficient with copying links, so I hope it works: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C6OYmmMicsA

 

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If I could drown

Baptism-in-Water-Immersion-670

It surged. Down the cemented floor, beyond a pool contaminated with oil, the water surged. Ten feet away, I watched as the man before me slipped on the slab and would have hit his head but for the hands that grabbed him. Instantaneously, fears surfaced that existed not. I turned back, away from the sight that nursed anxiety into the faces of compatriots who delved into songs to denote a spiritual acts. Underneath though, they were all scared.

With my face to the officiating pastor, someone tapped me and I took the hint. Taking frantic and likely tentative steps forward, I slipped up leather sandals on the concrete and offered my hands to the helping minister who could determine my fate or faith.

Then, the fleeting thoughts transcended to reality.

He took my hands, confirmed my purpose for carrying out this act. When I gave a satisfactory answer at first try, he endorsed, gripped the base of my head and dipped me under. At that moment, I felt not the taste of ragged water sweeping across my face. I felt not my whole body submerging under the begrimed liquid flogging my skin. I felt not strong hands squeezing my fragile tarsals to maintain balance.

I felt nothing.

And it was over.

I was baptized. I am baptized.

Truly, it takes experience and in-depth honesty to describe something as real and emotive as this. While I was under the water, a part of me wanted to stay below, drowning in the lake (or river in my case) of love as Thomas Hunter and his comrades did in Circle series. The more adhesive part screamed a mute ‘Let me go. I didn’t volunteer for this.’

Now, it is done. I’m water baptized. And I’ve been wondering since then. What happens next? Given, our teachers foresaw this and lectured on how to live as baptized Christians, but, truth be told, theory takes decades to become practical.

It’s been two days, and I shouldn’t be posting something as such online, but I’m kinda worried. *I became a man twenty-four days early. I really trust in the Holy Spirit to help me live as I should, fully giving my life to Christ and obeying His every command. However, a bit of me entertains the thought of staying under, where nothing was felt. Where I knew that my life was in the hands of the One who gives Life.

And herein lies my ‘sorrow.

*I’d legally be an adult then…

Like a budding flower

budding flowerSome months back, the time between spring and fall to be precise, I had a maize plant in an unoccupied garden of our building. It was such a delight to peek out every evening and note its progress, but waiting for the seed buried under four inches of sand to pop out its head and grow was like waiting for your just-wedded bride who is crossing the Atlantic by ship. And then it came out. And started growing. A stalk today. A cob another. The cobs took on full shape and blossomed into edible sizes. Today, the grains from the cobs have long been digested, but the lesson I’m drawing is as fresh as ever.

I’ve always wondered how God feels when His bride no longer waits for the promised return but rather goes off into the sinful world. Do you think God experiences sorrow as a result of our refusal to grow and mature in the nature of Jesus?

Today, while reading Philippians, Paul prayed for the church that they would *‘overflow in love for one another and for others.’ The truth, however, is that ‘the love of many has gone cold.’

It’s funny that this present generation expects others to do well to them first, show an act of kindness before they reciprocate. The belief is that anyone who wouldn’t add to you doesn’t deserve your kindness. Not that I’m advocating for keeping relationships with ‘parasites’ who would readily suck us dry, no. I’m hoping we would see that love is the way to go, anytime, any day.

And the truth is, we can’t give what we don’t have. It all starts with accepting what we are being offered (so says Father Andrew in my WIP). There’s no way we can love even our own family if we do not accept the love Christ offers. And I’m not trying to preach here, but to be logical.

You’d like to see a change in your boss’s behavior, right? I’m certain of students who would give anything for the class president/captain to stop hating them. Now, we do not have to give anything, we just need to accept what we are being offered.

Given, there are those who would never change, no matter how much we attempt (the Pharisees didn’t), but we can’t judge until we try. How beautiful it is when we show love.

Besides, you need to check this out. *‘And I pray that your love may abound more and more and extend to its fullest development in knowledge… and comprehensive discernment.’ Simply, we grow in knowledge and discernment as we grow in love. **Also, we would be presented pure, blameless, and holy in our hearts when we overflow in love…

So, what’s stopping you? What’s stopping me? What’s stopping us? Join me in making a decision to burst open with the Love of Christ, first by accepting His love always, and then by offering it to others. The blessings are limitless.

Thank you for reading.

* – Philippians 1:9

** – 1st Thessalonians 3: 12-13

P.S: My Thursday posts are on Love (my WIP is a novel that explores God’s Love and I dedicated Thursdays to It.) For other discussions, preview my previous Mon-Tues blogs and stay subscribed to coming ones. Also, show an act of love to this brother and share this post. The more reached, the better blessed.

Yet Another Dimension

Two days ago, I started a trip that took me thirty-two hours away from home. The fun of it was that I got to play with these kids who were seeing me for the first time yet took me in like I was one of their own. They didn’t mind sharing their drinks, showing me assignments, and endorsing a tickle of their ribs.

However, the parents took me on another whirlwind ride. You know that cliché that you can’t love without giving, it’s right. Diving deeper taught me something else though. You always have more than enough to give.

I grew up believing that you could only be a giver when you are earning a seven-figure annual salary. Now, I have an entirely different story to tell. Giving is the finished work of Love. One of my pastor is fond of saying that, ‘God loved the world so much that he gave.’ No one would have accepted the truth that He loves us if He didn’t give His only begotten son.

Something else I learnt is this. Money should rank last in your charity act. There are tons of values to bestow on others. Example. That boy who walks home alone from school, walk with him. The widow that hops to the market on a day that has you curled up in front of the fireplace, offer to pick up the groceries for her. Save a seat for someone in church, a football game, or an event. Help your neighbor with her math homework. Join the gramps in playing golf.

How do you know you are giving out of Love? There’s a contentment that comes with it, and a joy for the recipient of such act. How are you sure you aren’t doing too much? As long as it isn’t causing harm to anyone, including you, then it’s a safe mark. You might think, Mike, but I am not a Christian. I say, you would just be surprised how Loving the Father is.

So this week, show another dimension of Love.

Waiting for the way.

Not forgetting the importance of a regular post on one’s blog, I decided to skip a post today, mainly because our power supply took up a fault on Sunday’s midnight. A supplementary reason was lack of data for connecting to the internet.

As a result, I had no story to share. It wasn’t until this morning while reading a devotional that the idea of asking for a data transfer (our network provider allows it) from my elder brother. It takes about ten minutes for the sharing process to be done, but I got the notification not more than thirty seconds after ending the call.

So, the opportunity to post came, (the laptop was charged as at when I started typing, I’d just have to look for a place to recharge) but I wasn’t prepared. And therein lies a lesson for me and a message for you.

There’s a cliché that goes thus, ‘where there’s a will, there definitely would be a way.’ How true that is. I had only a tiny wish to leave something for myself and readers on my blog today, and the way reared its head out. However, something that should have been added to the saying is this: will should be coated with preparation. For only then would the way that shows up be fully exploited.

Your turn:

Have you had an incident where you thought your plan would fail miserably, but you had the last minute twist? What did it feel like?

 

Not beyond you

For today’s post, I decided to share some passages on Love. The version is The Living Bible. God bless you as you read. Amen.

“Love is very patient and kind, never jealous or envious, never boastful or proud, never haughty or selfish or rude. Love does not demand its own way. It is not irritable or touchy. It does not hold grudges and will hardly even notice when others do it wrong. It is never glad about injustice, but rejoices whenever truth wins out. If you love someone you will be loyal to him no matter what the cost. You will always believe in him, always expect the best of him, and always stand your ground in defending him.” (I Corinthians 13: 4-7)

“We know how much God loves us because we have felt his love and because we believe him when he tells us that he loves us dearly. God is love, and anyone who lives in love is living with God and God is living in him.” (I John 4:16)

Loving as commanded is not beyond us. Yes, it takes extra effort. Yes, it could cost us. But what joy awaits us if we would only choose to love. Dear reader, as you continue this week, show someone love, bearing in mind that it is not beyond you.

P.S: This post should be online on Thursday, but it is coming a little earlier. You could go back and check the previous Thursday’s Love post. Thank you.