Well, I hope everybody had a wonderful weekend and for some of us Canadians we had a Holiday on Monday so yay for the Long Weekend! Todays meditation is in regards to the Agape Love of God towards His children who are the Sons and Daughters of God. I have a video here as a reflection of How God’s love is sooo amazing through the parable of the Prodigal Son. I know that in other posts I have mentioned the prodigal son several times, but I felt the need to emphasize that God’s love doesn’t measure deeds, it measures the HEART.
The Prodical son used his inheritance to live a life of pleasure and did so with self-seeking ambition. When he asked for his inheritance from his father who was still alive it was equal to him saying “I wish you were dead already so that I could do whatever I want to do with my inheritance”. Although, this son’s request deeply hurt his father, His father gave him what he desired and watched him leave to go to a foriegn land to do whatever he wanted to do. The son travelled far because it was clear that he didn’t want to have anything to do with his family after he had received what he wanted out of a selfish and self-serving heart. When the boy squandered all that he had and realized that the so called friends he had now dissappeared now that he was penniless, he was forced to work in order to feed himself and therefore became enslaved to serve others as a consequence to his disobedient and self-seeking behavior in a distant land far from home. After contemplating what He had done, he began to realize that it would be better to serve under his fathers house and felt a deep regret for his actions and soon decides to leave the foreign land to return back to his fathers house seeking the serve under him as a servant not expecting or demanding forgiveness for his cruel words and actions.
I read somewhere that under Jewish custom, the son’s deeds would have been considered criminal which would have merited him death by stoning under the Jewish law for his actions, but instead of that, His father came out running to him because he was so overjoyed to see his son back alive. The love of that father was so great that by accepting him regardless of his deeds would have caused him to have been stoned alongside with his son had people discovered that he was harboring a criminal. This is how severe and serious the prodigal son’s actions were against his father. He deserved death by returning but instead he received mercy and love.
Although the son sought to serve his father as recompense for his mis-deeds, the Father welcomed Him with open arms and gave him a signet ring which represents renewal of covenant and a relationship restored. He also gave him a robe to clothe him representing covering and sonship. God is like that with us. If we backslide and return to him, we are like the prodigal son and He always welcomes us back into relationship with Him with open arms when we come back with a repentant heart. Sometimes the mis-deeds we have committed seem soo blaringly wicked and pitch black on a sheet of paper that we find it difficult to believe that God can forgive because God so loved the World that He gave His only begotten son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16). We ought to be imitators of this love towards our fellow brothers and sisters but we tend to be selective which isn’t quite matching the Agape love we are to exemplify. I’ll put my hand up and confess that I know to some extent I’m guilty of being selective at times since some people rub me the wrong way *still a work in progress here*.
Loving people that care for us is easy…but loving those that don’t seem to deserve it is our challenge. Our faith has to increase in this area of loving those that don’t deserve it because Love restores people back to the heart of God when they see it in action. It has the power of causing a sinner to repent and seek God’s face by someone’s conduct that demonstrates this love in action. We should acknowledge that we are not perfect and understanding this will help us humble ourselves before God that if we seek God to redeem us from our imperfections, then he demands and expects that we do the same for our fellow brothers and sisters who seek to be redeemed in the same way.
The songs of the redeemed come from a heart of LOVE. If God loves us in the same manner as the Prodigal son, we should treat backsliders with the same level of compassion as well. We should also treat those that do not know Christ in the same manner as well, because Love covers all sin and is able to deliver folk from that place of darkness into a place of restoration and relationship with the Father (Proverbs 10:12;1 Peter 4:8). So today, think about increasing your capacity to love people as Christ layed down His life for us because it is this Love that the Father has for us that He seeks for all to be restored back in relationship with Him again.
“Love one another as I have loved you” says the Lord (John 13:34).
I have a song called Worshiping You by Deluge. I love this song and I pray that it ministers to you today. Have a blessed day everybody and God bless You!
Scriptures to Meditate
Hatred stirs up strife, But love covers all sins.
Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, Whom He has redeemed from the hand of the enemy,
And they shall call them The Holy People, The Redeemed of the LORD; And you shall be called Sought Out, A City Not Forsaken.
“Blessed is the Lord God of Israel, For He has visited and redeemed His people,
A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.
By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”
This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.
Be kindly affectionate to one another with brotherly love, in honor giving preference to one another;
[ Love Your Neighbor ] Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.
with all lowliness and gentleness, with longsuffering, bearing with one another in love,
1 Peter 1:22
[ The Enduring Word ] Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart,
1 Peter 3:8
[ Called to Blessing ] Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous;
1 Peter 4:8
And above all things have fervent love for one another, for “love will cover a multitude of sins.”
1 John 4:7
[ Knowing God Through Love ] Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.
1 John 4:11
Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.
Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.