I shed tears the other day when Moses handed the baton over to Joshua. I sure did. I just lived life with him for a lot of days, a lot of chapters, even more manna, and complaining. Lots of mountain climbing as well. I could possibly climb a mountain now I mean I will not try to – I promise. I am not Moses or a mountain climber. Basically, I am a little sad to continue the journey on without him. So you get the baggage that is left over from the stories I now hold. Well, maybe they just sit there in my brain? I am also not a brain doctor nor practice in the studying of the brain. So.. yeah.
I never knew I would love Moses as much as I do, but anyone who can speak in front of a crowd of people is a winner in my book. Especially because that was his “it gets in the way of God using me” problem. I do not really know if that is suppose to be in quotations, but I am rolling with it. I also have no clue what book of mine that it is mentioned in or even really why I have an imaginary book in the first place. I just know that I love Moses for many more reasons now other than the time he took his shoes off. His leadership is huge. His love was big not just for the Lord, but for the people, too. I just asked a friend of mine what would happen if we stood in the gap for our loved ones like Moses did for Israel? I do not mean in the “please don’t kill the people” way, but more in “I know you can move in their life” kind of way. How would my attitude change with the ones God has called me to love? Not just love but to serve, to be apart of their life? Because if I am honest with the ones who are reading this today; I have a hard time some days loving like I am suppose to. You there with me? I ignore their problems, I look past the hurt on their faces, and I do not even throw encouragement their way. I fall short of that. Yes, I do when really it seems the most important is just to be there no matter what is going on in the lives He has placed in front of me.
God loved the people, too. Big. He loved them bigger than I could ever imagine love to be. Maybe that is why it is so overwhelming? There is no way I could love Him as much as He loves me. I try and still fall 12,000 steps below. I have written some of my favorite scriptures pertaining (big word, I know) to this topic of the love of God that I would like to share with you.
“This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.”
1 John 4:10
“Even before he made the world, God loved us and chose us in Christ to be holy and without fault in his eyes.”
“My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.”
He gave his Son so that I could live, and not only just live but so that I could be adopted and brought close to him. Y’all. Just soak that in for a minute before you continue on. One thing that got to me when I was memorizing the book of 1 John was this scripture verse right here, “Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other.” 1 John 4:11. I am fully convinced, ladies and maybe gentlemen, that Jesus passed the baton to us while in his three years of ministry before the cross. He loved, he forgave, he had super big compassion.. he touched the leper’s, y’all. He took our place. That. That is love.
I got it all wrong, ya know? Living for myself – loving what I should not when a world full of people who yeah maybe they complain, maybe they are hungry or thirsty, maybe they are hard to love, or maybe really they are just hurting because the world around us sucks. I am still called to love them. This has been super convicting to me the past few weeks. Just one phone call, one text, one compliment, one smile, one card in the mail could even change the way that person sees the day ahead. You NEVER know what it could do for them. I do not know that I could change the world, but I could change the world for the ones who God strategically has placed in my life for however long they are there for. I fail in this area a lotttt! I get so wrapped up in my circumstances that I forget to “let love be my highest goal” as Paul said. You know what else he said?
Put on Christ
“Rather, put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.”
“For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”
I do not really think that he meant it literally that would be just a little weird. To me it is simply, I know I say simply, to walk in the light, love something fierce, forgive all the time, sprinkle the grace, and hold the hand of the one who needs a little encouragement. Yes, even if they do not want to hold our hand.. hold it anyway, walk by them anyway, share Jesus anyway…
Love them anyway
“Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.” 1 Peter 4:8