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1 John 4:7-21, We Love Because God First Loved Us

Sunday, July 15

Active Love

Narrative Lectionary Daily Devotions written by Kace Leetch from Clergy Stuff.

active love

Here are quotes from a book that changed my life. Maybe it will change yours.

"My wife and I just don't have the same feelings for each other we used to have. I guess I just don't love her anymore and she doesn't love me. What can I do?"
"The feeling isn't there anymore?" I asked.
"That's right," he reaffirmed. "And we have three children we're really concerned about. What do you suggest?"
"Love her," I replied.
"I told you, the feeling just isn't there anymore."
"Love her."
"You don't understand. the feeling of love just isn't there."
"Then love her. If the feeling isn't there, that's a good reason to love her."
"But how do you love when you don't love?" 
"My friend, love is a verb. Love—the feeling—is a fruit of love, the verb. So love her. Serve her. Sacrifice. Listen to her. Empathize. Appreciate. Affirm her. Are you willing to do that?" 
— Stephen R. Covey (The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People: Powerful Lessons in Personal Change)

As children, we often grow up with the mistaken notion that love is a feeling. As in, we’ll know it when we feel it. But Covey’s perspective changed the way I approached every relationship since I read it. It helped me see that the feeling of love doesn’t exist without the action of love. Love is self-sacrifice, affirmation, empathy. It is struggling alongside when struggle seems to be the only option. It is lifting the other up, even it that feels like we are brought down. It is cooperation and collaboration over competition. It is listening and understanding over talking and being right. Love is hard. Love is precious. Love is modeled for us by a God that was the first to act in love.

God sent…

God loved…

God abides…

God is… love.

Narrative Lectionary Text: 1 John 4:7-21

We love because he first loved us. Those who say, “I love God,” and hate their brothers or sisters, are liars; for those who do not love a brother or sister whom they have seen, cannot love God whom they have not seen.The commandment we have from him is this: those who love God must love their brothers and sisters also.

Earlier Event: July 14
1 John 4:19-21, God Is Love