Friendship with God - Your Real Valentine
14 Feb 2004, Pr George Porter
(George is Thornleigh's Church Pastor)
TITLE: Friendship With God - Your Real Valentine
Theme : How to achieve meaningful Fellowship with God.
Scripture Reading: Romans 8:28-39
So far this year we have discussed the real Purpose and Meaning of life. We agreed that we need to Seek the Lord more in 2004. We also presented plans for enriched Spiritual growth and fellowship with the God Family. The Father God, Saviour God and God the Holy Spirit. We determined from Scripture that the only safe source of Purpose and Meaning is the Creator God family. We also determined that they are the only trustworthy and reliable Friends. We determined that we would plan for victory and deliver with energy in 2004 and beyond.
Our Passion to "serve the Lord more in 2004" comes from being "New Creations" as Christians. We are all "ministers of reconciliation"; "Ambassadors of reconciliation", with the "words of reconciliation." We will Know Him more in 2004. We will Love Him more in 2004 and we will Work with Him and Share Him more in 2004.
Today we need to be really practical and so simple, that even our children get the picture. So, how are we going to achieve a more meaningful fellowship with our God?
I wish to suggest Two Decisive Actions on our part. First of all we must do as Jesus Christ suggests, recorded in Matthew 6:33. "Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness." Seek God's goodness and seek to emulate His character in our behaviour. This will only happen if we take the Second decisive action as found in Matthew 22:37. Again Jesus advises, "You should love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your mind." It is Valentine's day today and here is Jesus if you please, instructing us to make God our true Valentine. The only Valentine we can trust 100%. Just imagine God wants us to be His Valentine. Yes, you as Valentine of the Heavenly God Family. What a wonderful love story.
Now what does it mean to love with all your heart, soul and mind? Take a look at the human body. On top in the skull bone is the brain. The central computer housing the mind, the will, knowledge, reason and motives. Wow, and God wants it all with our love! Now there is a true Valentine. Then there is the heart. The symbol of love and affection for all races and cultures since time immemorial. The organ of vital force. The symbol of life. God your Valentine wants nothing less than all, 100% of your affections, emotions feelings and entire life force! Wow! What a Valentine. Oh, what love. Then there is the soul. The Hebrew word for soul as used in Genesis of the Old Testament simply means, the entire human person. Body, mind, heart and soul - the total you. Our Heavenly Valentine family want our complete and total person in fellowship.
That is not all. When we have intentionally fallen in total love with our God we have more Valentines to accommodate as well. When we have loved ourselves to the point of falling in love with God, - Jesus Christ our Saviour, His Father and the Holy Spirit, we are to share this total love with our neighbours- family, workmates and acquaintances. It is a tandem love. You cannot have one without the other. Just as you cannot have a brain with out the heart, or can you have a heart without the brain, nor can you have a body with out soul. In Matt 22:39 Jesus made it clear "You should love your neighbour as yourself." Wow. Talk about wholesome fellowship and togetherness and Valentines. ( These facts were illustrated for the younger ones by using flannel models, chalk and blackboard.)
God the Father was in Christ's mind, heart and soul and He desires His rightful place in our heart, mind and souls. This is achieved by the Holy Spirit who is also permeated with Divinity for our benefit. Jesus Himself made it very plain as to how we can be enriched spiritually. In Revelation 3:20 NIV, He said, "Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will go in and eat with him, and he with me." Wow! Jesus our Saviour God is eager to be our Valentine. He wants to be in our hearts and minds. He wants to be always in our thoughts as we are in His. He wants to be Lord of our emotions and feelings, our thoughts, mind, will, conscience, reason and motives. He wants our total personal self as His valentine. He claims our soul as a right because He made us and recreated us through Calvary. Notice the context here in Revelation. Jesus comes knocking with the request, "So be earnest, and repent." Verse 19 last part NIV. This is the essence of "How" to be a with Christ and the God family. Invite Jesus into your entire soul, that is your being and person. Then we will experience spiritual enrichment and Christian growth. Jesus goes on to make a rash promise for us if we repent and overcome self. He promises eternal reign with Him on His throne in the future. It is by the same power and the same way He overcame temptations of humanity and died to save us. As He said, " as I also overcame and sat down with my Father on His throne." Forever with our Valentine God. Wow! On the throne. Dominion, authority, power and ruler-ship. Just imagine supporting the God family with all we are because they have glorified us in Christ's salvation. It boggles the mind. What Valentines we have in the God family.
The great news is as Pastor Paul wrote, with persuasion and conviction, " I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels or demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8: 38-39. (see 28-39).
To know our Valentine God we must find Him more in His love letter - the word of God your Bible. The Holy Scriptures brings God into our minds and thoughts. He takes control of our wills and motives by His irresistible love. To help you with your spiritual growth I have prepared for you an adapted plan of short Bible readings for each day for forty days. It is called 40 Days. Forty days is a popular time line for God in dealing with His people in the Bible History. Forty days of preparation for a closer
relationship and victory with Him. (If you would like copies of either the full script or short version for busy people, please send your request to our web site address with your e-mail address and I will forward them.)
If we are in earnest and genuine about our love relationship with the God, I believe we are wise to make a covenant with the God family. Today I wish to share with you a sample Covenant. Please consider it prayerfully and ask the Holy Spirit to accompany you into a covenant relationship with your Divine Valentine. I have signed my own copy. I want to experience a fuller relationship with our God too.
So for the next 40 days and beyond, lock on to God the Father, and Jesus Christ your Saviour, through the Holy Spirit , the Scriptures and prayer. Continue in passionate love and fellowship with them. Remember Jesus wants your heart and mind and soul, all for Him. (Rev 3:20). The old hymn says it all. Read it and ponder it thoughtfully and prayerfully.
In the Heart of Jesus
In the heart of Jesus There is love for you,
Love most pure and tender, Love most deep and true;
Why should you be lonely, Why for friendship sigh,
When the heart of Jesus Has a full supply?
In the mind of Jesus There is thought for you,
Warm as summer sunshine, Sweet as morning dew;
Why should you be fearful, Why take anxious thought,
Since the mind of Jesus , Cares for those He bought?
In the field of Jesus There is work for you;
Such as even angels Might rejoice to do;
Why stand idly sighing For some life work grand,
While the field of Jesus Seeks your reaping hand?
In the home of Jesus There's a place for you;
Glorious, bright and joyous Calm and peaceful too;
Why then, like a wanderer, Roam with weary pace,
If the home of Jesus Holds for you a place?
Seventh-day Adventist Hymnal No 577 (EMPHASIS Mine)
Wow! What a Valentine we have. Be in love with Christ Jesus your Saviour. Every success with your 40 Days plan. God's rich grace be upon you all both now and forever into the future.
Love and Serve the Lord more in 2004
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