There's something about the good news that is tangible. Love looks like something and we should know what it looks like. ~Heidi Baker
As many of you know I've been studying the Holy Spirit in depth for several months. Over the past week I've focused more on one specific attribute and that is that the Holy Spirit has "poured God's love into our hearts" (Romans 5:5). Obviously a fruit of having the Spirit is.... love. We know that without love all we do is nothing to the Lord. Months ago while having a dialogue with the Lord I heard Him say clearly, "Jessika you need to love deeply". It was a convicting statement because I knew that my love was very shallow in many ways.
But what does love look like? We have the obvious... love chapter... 1 Cor. 13. Love is patient. Kind. Not Jealous. Does not brag. Is not arrogant. Does not act unbecomingly. Does not seek its own. Is not proved. Doesn't take account of suffered wrong. Does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth. Bears all things. Believes all things. Hopes in all things. Endures all things.
That's love. I realize how short I fall of real love on almost every level. Not only am I supposed to love my family this way, my friends this way, but also my neighbor, my enemy, a stranger... How can I ever do that if I haven't even learned to do that with those closest to me? And yet the Word says that God's love is inside of me through the Holy Spirit. In other words, the source is there, I just have to use it. The truth is that love isn't near as much an emotion as it is character that is developed like everything else... self discipline.
Love must be cultivated like the other fruits of the Spirit. You must discipline yourself grounded and rooted in prayer and the Word, then taking daily steps to be patient, kind, not jealous...etc. It's not easy to "take no account of suffered wrong" when you live with your spouse everyday. It's not easy to hope in all things and endure all things with your enemy. It's not easy to not seek your own with a stranger. However, God kind of love is all of those things to ALL PEOPLE.
In this "love quest" over the last week I've found someone that I believe to be one of the greatest examples of love in our generation... Heidi Baker. (I highly encourage you to read her book "compelled by love"). I've been reading more of her stuff and watching some of her videos. Heidi loves all. It seems like she loves ALL the time, praise God we know she is human. LOL. I'd heard of Heidi before, but while in S. Sudan this summer I was with people who knew her very personally. They would tell stories of her that just amazed me and caused me to want to find out more. When I find someone that is serving God faithfully and passionately, who is making a positive difference in the world, and who seems to be living out the true Gospel I want to know what it is the focus on. Very simply... Heidi focuses on love and humility. Here's a piece of an article by Heidi:
If people are thirsty, love looks like water. If they are hungry, it looks like food. If they are homeless, it looks like shelter.If someone needs a friend or someone to talk to, it looks like quality time and a listening ear. If someone is messing up, it looks like correction and advice.Love doesn’t always feel good. If you were crossing the street and a truck was coming towards you and I ran and pushed you out of the way, it would probably hurt. You might even break a rib or two. But I just saved your life. Why? I care more about the preservation of your life and those who care about you than I do about whether or not you will enjoy the method in which I just saved it.And sometimes love corrects, rebukes, and even gets in your face and says, “HEY! You’re better than that!” Or ”Hey, those are lies you are believing, let me show you the truth.” You may not like what I have to say, but you’ll thank me later. If someone is sick/diseased or injured, love looks like physical healing. If they are being emotionally or mentally tormented, love looks like deliverance. If they’ve died prematurely, love looks like being raised from the dead, etc. Jesus went about, setting everyone free (Acts 10:38), and He said, “Now follow me.”
Jesus loved deeply, He was fully grace and fully truth, Jesus went around loving, doing the supernatural, and showing people the Father's heart. As I've studied more of Heidi's ministry she's rescued thousands of orphans, provided for widows, through her ministry deaf have heard, blind have seen, over 100 documented people raised from the dead... and yet when those closest to her talk about her, they simply say, "Heidi loves". If you were to ask me about Jesus, I'd say, "He loves". Am I living my life in such a way where those around me would say, "Jessika loves". She loves with no respecter of persons, she loves the man on the street as much as her best friend, she loves the youth as much as the widow, the drug addict as much as the evangelist, and do I treat them all as such?
Be Blessed, J. Tate