Love Tag

How to Handle Disappointments and Disagreements

Those who know God intimately have come to see that He often allows us to face adversity in order to conform us to the image of Christ. God determined from the beginning that we should be shaped into the image of His Son. Part of this plan involves the painful removal of those things in our lives that don’t reflect this image.

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Living Water and Loving Worship, part 2

Sometimes we fall into the same trap of thinking that worship is about a place, practice, or posture. It is not. It’s about the Lord. We call this the Worship Center, but there’s nothing more holy or sacred about this place than your prayer closet where you worship the Lord all alone. Or there’s nothing more sacred about this place you’re your kitchen table where you have family devotions. My automobile is a worship center, because every Sunday morning on my way here I am singing praises to God.

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Get Ready, Get Set, GROW!

Loving your neighbor as you love yourself simply means you see yourself as God sees you. You are fearfully and wonderfully made, but we are all made with flaws. But God loves us in spite of our imperfections. You and I are trophies of His grace. When you see yourself as a sinner saved by grace, but deeply loved by God, you are free to love others.

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Meet the Holy Family

To say we’re all God’s children is an attractive, tolerant way to speak about people today, but it’s not in the Bible. We are all part of the family of mankind, but we aren’t all part of the family of God. We are all God’s creatures (created by God), and God loves everyone and wants them to be saved, but only those who put their faith in Jesus Christ become His children.

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The Beauty of Extravagant Worship

Never miss the opportunity to worship. You never know when will be the last chance to worship God. This lesson also applies to showing love and appreciation to people as well. Never miss an opportunity to tell someone you love him or her, because you never know when you’ll have another chance.

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From Great to Good

When it comes to our personal relationship with God and with others, Jesus taught that personal goodness is more valuable than personal greatness.

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Evang-SHOW-lism: Share Your Story with Acts of Kindness

There is a fundamental difference between performing random acts of kindness and intentional acts of kindness that point people to God. The question is, “Who gets the credit?” If you perform a random act of kindness to someone, and say nothing, then you get the credit. If you perform an anonymous act of kindness, the force of human goodness gets the credit. But if you perform an act of kindness in the name of Jesus, you are pointing people to God.

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Hope to Hang in There

Are you tempted to give up and quit? Maybe God has given you a dream or a vision and it hasn’t happened yet. You want to give up—but don’t. Hang in there. Maybe you’ve been praying for something to happen for a long time and God hasn’t answered your prayer—don’t give up. Keep on praying. Keep on trusting. You may be in a bad situation, and you don’t know how you’re going to make it. Hang in there and hang on. Don’t give up!

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The Greatest of These is Love

One of the problems in the English language is that we only have one word for love. We have to use the same word when we say we love God, love our sweetheart, and love hot dogs. Because we’re restricted to the one English word, you can be misunderstood.

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Can You Fall from Grace?

How many of you have ever seen a falling star, raise your hand. Really? I doubt what you saw was a star. Our sun is a star, and stars don’t “fall.” What you saw was a piece of space junk, a meteor. It wasn’t a star falling. If you see a star falling, we’re in trouble. And if you think you saw a Christian who fell from salvation, chances are they weren’t a Christian in the first place.

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Sharing the Miracle of Salvation

If Penn Jillette, a confirmed atheist, can tell us that if we believe heaven and hell exists, and if we believe there is eternal life, and we DON’T tell others; then it shows we must really hate them.

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The Fragrance of Worship

We know from John’s account that the perfume Mary anointed Jesus with was worth 300 denarii, which is equal to a year’s wages. So figure your annual salary, and you begin to have an idea about how expensive this gift was. But she poured it all out on Jesus in an act of worship. To Mary, no expense would be spared. Her great love for Jesus could only be expressed by giving her most prized possession. Breaking the bottle symbolized her brokenness before the Lord.

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I’ll Take the Camel; but Hold the Gnat

God is interested in how you manage His money, and He wants you to honor Him with the tithe. He’s interested in every area of your personal life. The websites you look at matter to God. The drugs you’re taking? They matter to God. The gossip you’re spreading? It matters to God. How you care for His temple, your body? It matters to God. Your personal morality matters to God, but if your concern for personal morality doesn’t lead you to help hurting people, you’ve missed the point.

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Redeemed, Rescued and Rewarded

In this drama about love and redemption, there is a crisis that must be overcome before Boaz can marry Ruth. This is also a story of God’s love for us and our redemption. In much the same way, there are some issues that must be settled in our understanding of salvation before we can fully accept Jesus as our Kinsman-Redeemer. So, I want to talk about the rival redeemer, the real redeemer and the redeemer’s reward.

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What’s Love Got to Do with It?

Why do you do what you do for the Lord? Instead of focusing on WHAT you do for God, I want you to think about WHY you do it. WHY did you get up and come to church this morning? WHY did you give an offering to the Lord? WHY did you sing songs of praise? WHY are many of you teaching children, youth, or adults? In other words, what motivates you to serve God? Do you do it out of a sense of obligation, or out of a sense of love?

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How to Dress in Style with Jesus

In Colossians 3, the Apostle Paul compared the Christian life to taking off old clothes and putting on new clothes.
The Bible lists seven positive characteristics we are to put on to replace those old clothes. But these aren’t just qualities we have to create ourselves. They all form a description of Jesus Christ. To put it simply, we just need to dress like Jesus. I’m not talking about his robe and sandals—but rather we should wear His personality.

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The Rest of Your Life Can Be the Best of Your Life

Have you discovered the secret of God’s strength? If you do, the rest of your life can be the best of your life. Here’s how: Pray like never before, because God’s clock is winding down. Show love to others so deeply that you welcome strangers into your life. Give your life away to others–but do it in God’s strength.

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The Passion of the Christ–Revisited

From my years of study concerning Roman crucifixion, I’m prepared to say The Passion comes closest to portraying the brutality and horror of scourging and crucifixion. But, for the sake of decency, it STILL falls short of the full brutality of what really happened. Special effects and make up can’t reflect the hideous effects of being beaten with metal balls embedded in the ends of leather thongs. Just ask any ER physician or state trooper how much blood the human body is able of spilling and you’ll realize the movie was tempered in that respect. And there is ample documentation that the Romans stripped prisoners nude for the scourging and crucifixion to add to their shame. As bad as the graphic torture was, I came away thinking we had been spared from the full horror of it.

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The World’s Greatest Gospel Quartet

Every quartet has a lead singer who carries the melody line. In much the same way, faith leads the way in the Christian life, Hope is the first tenor, love is the baritone and the Word is the bass singer.

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Connected Through Your Community

Telling others about Jesus must be our top priority. How can we be content to go to heaven when there are thousands around us who haven’t yet trusted Christ? It’s as if we have been rescued from drowning and we’re sitting in the lifeboat of salvation while all around us the water is full of drowning people who are calling out for help.

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How to Deal with Difficult People

When God is trying to teach you how to love, don’t think for one moment He is going to send some wonderful, kind, sweet, loveable person into your life. He’s going to toss some old bear of a person into your life and He’s going to say, “You love on that one for awhile, and then I’ll send you another one.” That’s the challenge. That’s why He said, “This is why you need my power to do it.”

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Jesus: The Rejected Lover

When you are carrying the cross of Jesus, you have already died to self. You can’t scare a dead man. When you’re carrying the cross, it’s a liberating experience because you don’t have to be afraid of anybody or anything…The Bible says, “Perfect love casts out all fear.” (I John 4:18) That’s why Jesus wasn’t afraid, because He possessed a perfect love for us. And we don’t have to be afraid because of His perfect love for us. Jesus laughed in the face of the fear of death. When you are carrying the cross, you can laugh at any other threat, too.

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A Tale of Two Sisters

Most people tend to be a Mary or a Martha. Christian women know what I mean when I say that. Generally speaking, Marys tend to be quieter and more contemplative and Marthas are highly driven, organized and outspoken.

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Would You Kiss the Feet of Jesus?

Have you been forgiven but you really haven’t shown your love and worship to Jesus for His forgiveness? Worship always happens at the feet of Jesus. Worship is a preoccupation with Jesus, not some form or ritual. Worship is more concerned about giving something than getting something. Do you need to fall at the feet of Jesus today and kiss them and say, “Thank you Jesus for forgiving my horrible sins?”

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Love is Better Than Liberty

A tightrope is a picture of Christian liberty. It’s not just a wide valley you stroll through with no consideration of other people. On one side, if you’re not careful, you will fall into legalism and go back to your list. On the other side, if you’re not careful, you will fall into unrestrained license. But somewhere in between the two is the beautiful tightrope of balance, and the balance bar for a Christian is love. Love for God on one hand and love for others on the other end. And when you understand love is more important than liberty, you’ll be able to walk the tightrope of liberty, and you’ll enjoy the Christian life and you’ll be a blessing to others.

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Hey! A Christian Can’t Do THAT!

There are things we face in life that do not fall neatly into the right or wrong categories. There are some things we’re faced with, some areas of conduct that the Bible really doesn’t address. That’s what Paul is addressing.

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The Debt of Love I Owe

What does the Bible say about debt? The Bible says you should never carry any more debt than you can successfully pay for. We live in such a materialistic culture it causes people to borrow money they can’t repay. Do you know what the American culture says? The American culture says you need to buy things you don’t need with money you don’t have to impress people you don’t even know. That’s what gets so many people in trouble.

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How to Deal with Mean People

Sometimes when your enemies treat you wrong and insult you and hurt you and you try to get revenge and you try to do something about the situation, all you do is make a bloody mess of it. There are some of you right now, you’ve got that sword in your hand, and if you had the chance, you would get back at them. You would hurt those people who have hurt you. And if Jesus doesn’t say anything else to you in this service, it may be that Jesus just tells you to put your sword away. Some of you just need to put it in the scabbard, because God is going repay evil.

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Five Laws for Healthy Relationships

What is it that makes you different, as a Christian, than somebody out there that’s not a Christian? The fact that when you die, you’re going to go to heaven? It ought to mean so much more than that. One of the main differences between a person who is a Christian and one who is not is how we relate to other people, especially to other people who don’t like us, especially to people who mistreat us.

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Jacob the Grabber

The account of Esau’s stolen birthright by Jacob and Rebekah and how greed and deception divided a family.

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Love Story

The story of Isaac and Rebekah is a beautiful love story in and of itself but it’s also a beautiful story of how God, the Father, loves you and wants the best for you. He sends the Holy Spirit to draw you to the Father and then you as a person, like Rebekah, chooses whether or not to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit but when you do, you are entered into an intimate, personal relationship with Jesus Christ.

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The Limits of Love

The church at Corinth was located within a morally corrupt society. It was the worst society you could imagine. Immorality was rampant. There was a byword used in biblical times, where you would take the word, Corinth, and make a verb out of it and you spoke of “corinthisizing” someone. To corinthisize someone meant to take a moral person and despoil them, introduce them to an immoral lifestyle. Anywhere in the Roman Empire you took a good person and despoiled them, the word they used was corinthisized! That’s how morally corrupt this place was. Paul tells this little church in Corinth, “More important than anything else, you have to have agape love.” Paul’s four observations on the limits of love.

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What’s Greater Than Gifts?

One of the problems in the English language is we really only have one word for love. We have other synonymous words, like affection, friendship, things like that. But in the Greek language, they had four different words to describe four different kinds of love: Agape, storge, eros, and phileo. But the highest most perfect most mature love the Bible talks about is the word used here in 1 Corinthians 13, the word Jesus most often used and it is that word agape, which means “unselfish, divine love.”

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What Every Woman Wishes Her Husband Knew About Her

Your wife is not a possession. She is a part of you. That’s what the word “partner” means. The Bible says you are to treat her the way you treat your own body. Instead of thinking of your wife as a new automobile, think of her as your hand or as your arm. She’s an extension of who you are. She’s a part of you. For you to get rid of her and trade her in on a new model would be like you saying, “I’m going to cut off my arm and go to the hospital and get another arm.”

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Men are from Pluto and Women are from Mercury

Men and women are different and if you don’t try to understand some of those differences, you’ll have trouble in marriage, or in the workplace, or in relating to people of the opposite sex. Some guys just don’t want to learn; some women don’t want to learn. They think ignorance is bliss. No. In marriage ignorance is absolute misery if you don’t understand the special, unique differences between you and your spouse.

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How to Recognize a Real Christian

The book of Revelation says during the time of the Tribulation there is going to be hail the size of a millstone (two thousand pounds). Softball-sized hail is scary. Millstone-sized hail is absolutely terrifying! I’m glad I’m not going to be here during the Tribulation, aren’t you born-again Christians? Hail is the same thing as raindrops but the difference is it is cold and hard and it damages. The words you speak can either be raindrops or they can be hail. When they are cold and hard they are like hailstones that destroy, but when they are kind and liquid they are like raindrops they give nourishment. The Bible says slander should not be a part of the lifestyle of a Christian.

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Are You Enjoying Your Inheritance?

Paul said there’s a kind of Christian that caused him to thank God when he thought about them. This is what I call a healthy Christian. There are two marks of a healthy Christian according to the apostle, Paul. Number one is faith in Jesus. You cannot be a Christian unless you put your faith in Jesus. But it is not your faith that saves you. It’s your faith in JESUS that saves you. It’s the object of your faith. You can have a ton of faith but if it is in the wrong thing, it won’t help you a bit.

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What to Do When the Glow is Gone

The city of Ephesus was one of the most important cities of the ancient world. Ephesus had a problem. It was the center of a fertility type of pagan religion. It was a religion that basically worshiped sexual reproduction. It was also home to one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.
These Christians in Ephesus lived in that kind of a setting. Yet they were a church Jesus wrote to and said, “I praise you. You are working hard and you are not giving up. You are hanging in there. You are keeping on keeping on.” Yet the church at Ephesus was guilty of forsaking their first love.

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Linked Together in Love

The Bible says if we don’t humble ourselves, God has a way of humbling us. The secret to joy is found when Jesus is first, others are second and you are last. If you have selfishness and pride in your heart, turn from it and repent. Ask God to replace your selfishness with love and to replace your pride with humility. Guard the unity God has created.

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