Copyright 2017 Theresa Harvard Johnson
Galatians 5:13 a ESV, “For you were called to freedom, brothers.”
I do not know when it happened.
But one day recently, I woke up and realized I had a renewed trust in humanity, a greater capacity to love. My heart was so full of emotion that I sat in my bed weeping and writing – trying to capture this beautiful moment with Holy Spirit as my heart came alive.
It’s funny really.
You see, I did not realize my heart was STILL SERIOUSLY BOUND. Yet, there I was feeling tremendous love all around me…., experiencing great breaking and I desperately needed it. What is even crazier – at least for me – is that I could acknowledge my need freely before God in that moment and receive it.
I discovered, that even after all these years in Christ, that I still had a fortress so high around my heart that I was still subconsciously holding up walls, protecting myself. I was still struggling to trust and live in truth concerning where I was. Why or how that happened is not significant right now. What is important, however, is knowing that God wants our HEART’S FREE and he wants us to experience REAL LOVE – not just from an invisible supernatural place in our understanding. He wants us to touch it from a tangible place in the natural including God-appointed relationships. It's okay to need and desire Christ-centered love. Were it not so, He would have stopped at marriage and not continued with demonstrating Jonathan's love for David, Paul's love for Timothy or John's love for Christ. Mark 12:30-31 (the love God, love one another command) has renewed meaning for me this morning.
There are so many people in the earth who have never experienced love or who have never been loved correctly or at all by parents, caregivers, family, spouses or friends. We have a huge part in demonstrating this through Christ! We must SEE THAT or we have missed the point of our calling! Many people have stood unable to express love to others. They have moved through life… starving. I was one of them - but God's people let HIM use them. You see, a lack of love creates a hunger deep within… that is far greater than any food and our lust for it gives us all the wrong ideas concerning how to fill that hunger, ease its desperate thirst.
We often deny that we are created by God – for LOVE. Every word for God in scripture SCREAMS of this! OH TO SEE IT IS ALMOST UNBEARABLE!
Mother Theresa said, “Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybody, I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat.”
I agree with this prophet’s wise words.
Even as a child, I can remember crying in the night just for an embrace or one opportunity to feel protected and loved. I can remember thinking I would be better off dead than to live a life unloved. When I attempted to commit suicide for the first time as a child, my last thought before that moment was, “Why am I here?” I felt totally dejected, out of place, and despised. I couldn’t even stand to look at my own reflection in the mirror. My self-hatred was so deep. Every negative and destructive decision I made in my life came back to this truth: I felt rejected by love.
It has only been God’s savings grace and His supernatural love that chiseled away at my walls. Even though you might not believe it right now, Christ is always active in our lives REMOVING WALLS that hinder love. I see that so clearly now.
For me, the only way to get through many of those “starving nights” was to cry out to Him, make it through the day and cry out again. No matter where you find yourself – even in this moment, LOVE IS BEING WORKED OUT FOR YOU. The hindrance to apprehending it, as I see it, is not so much as waiting on the right person to love you but it is laying your longing and desire down before Christ and expecting Holy Spirit to TEACH YOU (1) to receive His love; (2) to accept His love; (3) to learn to love Him; (4) to learn to apprehend love; and (5) to learn to love other.
Yeah, I know… what does this mean?
It means that we are constantly in a renewing cycle with God of learning to LOVE in a greater measure. It means to take your hands and body weight off the wall that you’ve been holding up for years or decades; and fully give yourself to God. It means to risk everything for the greatest experience any human being can ever have in this life – to love God and love one another.
It means growing in TRUST. LOVE IS YOUR PORTION…. and, despite what you have heard, it is the SINGLE KEY TO ABUNDANT LIFE (JOHN 10:10 ). (Listen, I know you might think I should have learned this by now. But truthfully, I am just really getting it and I cannot contain myself.)
I am learning that Mark 12:30-31 is not what we think! It is an abundant life passage… a crushing reality that GOD HAS LOVE FOR YOU through a supernatural stream that flows directly from AND through others FOR YOU! It’s facing a crushing reality that we can LEARN TO LOVE in a way that connects with people at that core of their being – and it can be completely safe, nurturing, fulfilling and AUTHENTIC.
You see, we need the love of God and we need His love to appear through one another. The BODY and our body starves without it.
Today, I realize that I’d rather have His love demonstrated in and through my life over anything else. My prayer is that you will want this as well…. and pursue it through Christ who loved us eternally. Listen, I have never uttered these words in my life: “I AM LOVED!”
But I woke up this morning knowing it. I woke up thanking God for the people in my life who have demonstrated it mercifully, even when I didn’t recognize it or understand how to receive. They were a part of the deconstruction and demolishing. I am thankful for the exponential expression of it in this season of my life. It’s happening so fast that even now I feel overwhelmed just typing this. There are huge sections of the wall that are completely gone.
I feel resuscitated. I am determined to stay on course. I pray that you are ready to join me in this supernatural journey – to receive God’s love and to give His love.
We must remember, LOVE IS A CONQUEROR! If nothing else can give you a breakthrough in this life, LOVE CAN. And Father has positioned HIS PEOPLE to be catalysts for such grace in this hour. Don’t let fear block your freedom and abundance.
Simply pray this as often as you think of Him: “Teach me to apprehend your love God, and release it in every area of my life. My heart’s desire is to live out the greatest two commandments known to man.”
- Last Updated: 17 February 2017
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