Are You Motivated By Unconditional, Self-Sacrificial Love?
We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death (1 John 3:14).
The successful Christian life is a life lived in the spirit. That is, a life where the real me, my human spirit, is allowed to control my behavior. Walking in the spirit is allowing my spirit, filled with God’s nature, to rule my conduct. Walking in the spirit is allowing the Word first place in my thoughts as I make decisions in how I approach the everyday life issues.
So many of us allow our minds, emotions, and bodies to control us with no input from the spirit life, and the light within us is dimmed. If I am a wise believer I take time to feed on the Word of God each day and I spend time meditating in the Word so that my human spirit can be strong and vibrant, motivating my lifestyle.
Walking in love is one of the signposts on the road of a spirit-led day. When I am walking in the spirit, I will be ruled by the love of God. When this love rules me from within, I will love others without requiring them to act in a way that pleases me, that is, I will love them unconditionally. I will put myself and my wishes last and the other person and their needs first. I will love others regardless of their attitude and demeanor towards me. I will be patient, kind, caring, honest, real, joy filled, hopeful, believing, and mannerly. When this love rules me, I will live above strife and petty differences. This love of God within me doesn’t pay attention to the wrongs others commit against me, and it will move me to treat those who treat me offensively as though they had done no wrong!
I encourage you to take time daily to meditate in 1 Corinthians 13, and to remind yourself that love is to rule you today. We’re to be clothed with love. When others see us, the first thing they should notice is an unselfish love that puts others first and is kind, winsome, and real. That’s what Jesus wants for me today.
If I’ll seek to be ruled by love today, I will be allowing my human spirit the right of way in my life. And the Father and Jesus will direct my steps through the Word. I’ll live above the strife, envy and self-centeredness that are so common today, and I will be used to be the light that Jesus has called me to be.
No one lights a lamp and then puts it under a basket. Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your good deeds shine out for all to see, so that everyone will praise your heavenly Father (Matthew 5:15-16 - NLT)
1 Corinthians 13:4-8 (AMPC)
Love endures long and is patient and kind; love never is envious nor boils over with jealousy, is not boastful or vainglorious, does not display itself haughtily.
(5) It is not conceited (arrogant and inflated with pride); it is not rude (unmannerly) and does not act unbecomingly. Love (God’s love in us) does not insist on its own rights or its own way, for it is not self-seeking; it is not touchy or fretful or resentful; it takes no account of the evil done to it [it pays no attention to a suffered wrong]. (6) It does not rejoice at injustice and unrighteousness, but rejoices when right and truth prevail. (7) Love bears up under anything and everything that comes, is ever ready to believe the best of every person, its hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening]. (8) Love never fails [never fades out or becomes obsolete or comes to an end].