True happiness is to love God. Everything else, the pursuit of riches, the wanting desires of the heart, the need to love and be loved, aside from God, will leave us empty and continually searching for purpose and meaning. There will come a time in our lives when we will stand before God and he will ask, “What have you done with your life?” And if all we could say is, “I became a world-renowned pianist,” or “I wrote hundreds of bestsellers,” or “I climbed Mount Everest,” or “I became CEO of the largest and most successful company on Earth,” God will then ask, “Did you love me?”
“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” (Matthew 22:37)
Apart from loving others, loving God should be our calling throughout our lives. No other commandment is greater than to give oneself wholly to God in service for his glory. That means not only in word but also in action. God would like us to love him in a way that would change us to think like him. What would Jesus do? But the question really is, what would we do apart from God? If we did not love God, what would our lives look like without that love? We do not want to stand before God one day to have him ask, “Did you love me?”
Our lives are like the wind. In a moment in time, we will disappear. But with God in our lives, we have meaning. He looks after us. He cares for us. He makes sure that we will not fail; for his destiny for us is greater than anything we could ever imagine for ourselves. Our salvation rests in Christ. No one can take away our reward. God is our king, and one day He will crown us with glory and honor, as He had done with His son Jesus. We need to trust Him:
“Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and will not be afraid; for the Lord God is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation.” (Isaiah 12:2)
May God pour love into your heart so that you may become a perfect witness for others to follow. May your light shine in the darkness so that you may become a bulwark for those who are seeking the truth. Glorify God always, giving Him honor in everything. Never allow Satan to take away what rightfully belongs to you. Trust God. His love for you will never fail.
In everything we do, let us trust God with all our might. Nothing in this world comes close to the wealth God has in store for us. Others will rebuke us for our beliefs. Others will condemn us. Others will go as far as falsely claim we are evil in God’s eyes. But we must trust God in everything we do. He knows what we suffer. And He knows what we will need in our time of need. God is just in all that He does. He will never surrender us to anyone. His love for us will be the same today, now and forever.
Be kind to one another. Love each other as Jesus loved you, insomuch that He shed his blood for us while we were yet sinners. Give and never fear of going without. God will always provide. He is the one who created everything. Is it so difficult for Him to supply the needs for his children?
Above all else, remember to have a soft and gentle heart to those who wrong you. They are lost, and they do not know what they do when they are harming you. The apostle Peter says it this way:
“For this is a gracious thing, when, mindful of God, one endures sorrows while suffering unjustly.” (1 Peter 2:19)
A gentle spirit is humble. A gentle spirit is pure. It does not desire vengeance, nor does it desire evil for evil. It returns love for hate. It shows understanding when there is a lack of wisdom. And it promotes comfort for those times when others feel insecure.
The kingdom of heaven belongs to the little children. That is something Jesus said. Jesus made it a point to encourage his disciples to receive the kingdom like a child. What does that mean? Here is the text as written in Luke 18:15-17:
“Now they were bringing even infants to him that he might touch them. And when the disciples saw it, they rebuked them. But Jesus called them to him, saying, ‘Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for to such belongs the kingdom of God. Truly, I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God like a child shall not enter it.’”
A friend of mine recently said to me, “I used to be so passionate and driven. What happened?” I took a moment and thought about it, and then I realized God was trying to tell me something; not only tell me something but also tell my friend something. People do not say these things without a reason. There is always a reason for their statements.
I explained it this way: I think, and this is purely out of my own experience, that as we get older we tend to lose more and more of our childlike qualities because the stresses of reality tend to choke them out of us. We are looking so much at what is happening now, with the bills to pay, the meals we have to prepare, the clothes we have to wash, the friends we think others want us to be, that we do not look at what God has given us and what he wants us to be. Jesus said, “Let the children come to me.” I thought about this a lot, and I believe kids are the happiest when they know someone loves them. Now I know Christ loves us, otherwise he would not have given his life for us like he did. But I also think that somehow, as we grow older and as we try to become more like Christ, we should remember what it was like to be as a child. That means, not worrying about what comes next, but living for God every day in the best possible way we can. How am I making a difference by simplifying my life so that the cares of this world do not choke God’s gift from me.
That was my quick explanation. As I give it more thought, however, I am more inclined to go deeper. Matthew 18:3-4 is Jesus’ answer to his disciples when they were arguing about who is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. He said, “Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”
King David’s reign over Israel was unique in that he suffered much. For instance, Israel’s former king, Saul, chased him and wanted him dead; the Philistines continually attacked his kingdom and gave him no rest; he fell under the temptation of adultery with Bathsheba; he murdered her husband Uriah, who also happened to be one of his mighty warriors; and he fended against a bloody rebellion led by his son Absalom.
“Then they asked for a king, and God gave them Saul the son of Kish, a man of the tribe of Benjamin, for forty years. And when he had removed him, he raised up David to be their king, of whom he testified and said, ‘I have found in David the son of Jesse a man after my heart, who will do all my will.’” (Acts 13:21-22)
The thing about David is that once he repented, he moved forward and resolved never to commit the same sin twice. David could have in fact written Psalms 51 on his knees while he sobbed, “Have mercy on me, O God, according to your steadfast love; according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin! For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me” (Psalms 51:1-3).
As Christians, we may also feel deep sadness for the evil we once committed. God, though, sees our hearts and he will forgive us, as he did with David:
“Of this man’s offspring God has brought to Israel a Savior, Jesus, as he promised.” (Acts 13:23)
We just have to repent of our sins and believe Jesus is his son (Mark 1:15). Once we do that, salvation is ours. But we have to take that vital first step and come before him in prayer.
If you have come here feeling alone and lost, God knows. He will forgive you. God is there for you and he will help you find your way. He will help you find your center.