We Love Because
“We love because he first loved us.” (1 John 4:19)
Why are we so hard with
Why so much
We are all frail
All of us are
by life in this
None of us are
none of us.
All of us are
in desperate need of
all of us.
All of us bear an image
not of our failures
but of our Creator.
All of us carry a piece of his
His son died
to give us
May we greet
with patient grace
not first for our comfort
but for our Father’s
“By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:35)
Maybe one of the biggest sins in our relationships with one another is the sin of forgetting.
It is so easy to forget how profound your need for grace is, and it is equally easy to forget the amazing grace that has been freely showered upon you. And when you forget the grace you’ve been given, it becomes very easy to respond to the people around you without grace.
A joyful life of grace toward others grows best in the soil of gratitude. When I reflect on who I am, when I take time to consider the grace that I couldn’t have earned, achieved, or deserved but which has been lavished on me, and when I remember that that grace came at the cost of the life of another, then I am joyfully motivated to give that grace to others.
“Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32)
For the believer, harsh, critical, impatient, and irritated responses to others are always connected to forgetting or denying who we are and what we have been given in Jesus.
No one gives grace better than a person who is deeply convinced of their own need of it and who is cogently aware of the grace they have been, and are being, given.
“For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. For if these qualities are yours and are increasing, they keep you from being ineffective or unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. For whoever lacks these qualities is so nearsighted that he is blind, having forgotten that he was cleansed from his former sins.” (2 Peter 1:5-9, ESV)
Paul David Tripp
1. Have you been unkind to someone recently, in word or deed? Why did you respond this way? Examine your own heart, not their words or actions, for the cause.
2. Identify someone with whom you can be tender today. Be specific. What can you say or do, and how can you say those words and perform those deeds with tenderness? How did Jesus display tenderness with others?
3. Who has sinned against you recently? How did they hurt you? Were you surprised that this person hurt you in this way?
4. Were you, or are you still, tempted to take revenge? Did you withhold forgiveness for a while, or are you still withholding forgiveness?
5. How does remembering the lavish love of Christ change your answers to all of the above? What will you do to meditate on the love of Christ so that it pours out upon others in your life?
6. What else, besides the forgiveness of sins, do you tend to forget? How does this impact your relationship with the Lord and with others?