Sunday, April 22, 2012

Love Leaves No Regret

Hi John,
   I was listening to a CD of a Sunday meeting in June of 1980, and you were preaching.  It reminded me of our last few meetings, and of some recent Pearls of the Day.  I typed out a part of what you said in your sermon that day.  I loved what I felt in that message you gave, this is a small part of it.
Pastor John's Sermon, June 1980:

When we get so full of the love of God that we do all we can do, there will be no regret, no words that you wish you could have back, no deeds that you wish you hadn't done.  The love of God will keep you in that place where you have done all you can do, loved all you can love, testified all that you can testify, given all that you can give.
Remembering the song, "When He Was on the Cross, I Was on His Mind", I was thinking about how impossible it is for anyone to be right with God if they turn Jesus away.  Jesus walked in love.  Everything he did was for us; everything he said was for us.  He had us on his mind whenever he took a breath, and whenever he went somewhere, he had us on his mind.

You can't be right with God and turn somebody down like that.  We can be like Jesus.  We can get close enough to God where people can't turn away from us and be right with God, and can't turn away our testimony, can't turn away our lives.  We can be enough like Christ that people who want to be like us want to be like our heavenly Father.  We can be so much like Christ and so full of Christ that if people don't want to be like us their missing God.  I am glad we can be that way.  When we are filled with the love of God, that is exactly how it will be.  Christ can be in us what he was in Jesus; he can show just as much love and power through the body of Christ as he did through the body of Mary's Son!
Paul said, "It is not me that liveth, but Christ liveth in me," and "For me to live is Christ!"  Do we not want to be like Paul?  If we do, then we want to be like God and His Son.   Yes, we want to be like Paul, just as Paul wanted to be like Christ.  I want us all to be like that, and I am excited about what Christ is doing for us.

I have lost sight of whether I am right or wrong; all my attention is on how right I can help somebody else to be.  Even when people visit my home to talk about the scriptures, I am more interested in what is going into their heart and what is going into their mind, than what’s in my mind and what’s in my heart.  I believe that’s the right way to treat one another.
 The other Sunday we had friend's pastor at our house and we were talking to him about that homemade scripture, "the holy ghost won't dwell in unclean temple".  Many Pentecostals still quote that invented verse and truly believe that it is in the Bible.  Well, on this day, we were trying to show him that such a doctrine is not true.  But the whole time we were talking to him, I was praying for him as hard as I could pray.  “God, keep him comfortable!  God, let him feel that we love him!  God, let him be at peace, and let these things go in.”  We didn't refer to many scriptures, and we didn't pull out so many proofs of this and that, and he eventually received what we were saying to him.  I believe he was willing to receive truth from us because he felt loved, not attacked or belittled.   I know this; I had my heart on his welfare and not so much on trying to prove I was right.

Love one another!  Love one another!  "By this, all men will know that you are my disciples - by the love you have one to another."  Jesus said that, and if we are like him, we can say that, too.