God of Love 18

“As the Father has loved Me
so have I loved you”
(John 15:9)

God is a God of Love.

And because God is Love the love that flows from the Father to the Son is beyond anything that we can imagine or experience – primarily because our fallen natures are incapable of receiving, accepting and responding to such love. If we could we would be likely to implode or explode because it would be too powerful for our ‘receptors and wiring.”

And yet Jesus tells us that this love – this perfect love of the Father for the Son – is the same love in depth and power that He has for us. It is no wonder then that Paul, having met a Love beyond his experience and expectations, could pray that we should know it as well.

“I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge–that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God” (Ephesians 3:16-19)

We glimpse something of the boundless extent of that Love on the Cross – but even so the full meaning and appreciation of it is wrapped in a mystery that is beyond us. We can only acknowledge it in awe and wonder and pray that the Holy Spirit will enable us to enter more fully into the appreciation and experience of it.

 “because God has poured out His love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us” (Romans 5:5)

This love needs to sink from our minds into our spirits and hearts. Pray it there.


Holy Spirit please touch my heart and spirit with the far deeper knowledge and appreciation of this great and boundless love – and help me to respond in love as well. Amen.



Love of God 17

“A new command I give you: Love one another.
As I have loved you,
so you must love one another”
(John 13:34)

God is a God of Love.

If the way that we love everyone else is the standard by which we measure God’s love for us then generally speaking it is neither great not dependable.

However God’s love is rather assessed by the beauty of His creation and the awesome sacrifice of Christ on the Cross. He has given the entire created order into our hands, He has sacrificed Himself for our benefit and has given us an equal share of His only Son’s eternal inheritance.

  • “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities–his eternal power and divine nature–have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made” (Romans 1:20)
  • “You made him ruler over the works of your hands; you put everything under his feet” (Psalm 8:6)
  • “In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace” (Ephesians 1:7)
  • “Now if we are children, then we are heirs–heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ” (Romans 8:17)

And if that were not enough He has given us also the gift of Himself in the Holy Spirit. It is the Spirit who pours the love of God into our hearts.

  • “God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us” (Romans 5:5)

It is as the abundant glory of God’s love impacts our hearts that we are enabled to begin loving others as God desires – not with the often shallowness and superficiality of human love but in the life-blessing and life-changing way that is His way.

  • “We love because he first loved us” (1 John 4:19)

Ask God to help you to be more aware of the reality and depth of His love


I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen (me) with power through His Spirit in (my) inner being, so that Christ may dwell in (my) heart through faith. And I pray that (I), being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge–that (I) may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Amen. (Ephesians 3:16-19)



Living Worship

“Glorify your Son,
that your Son may glorify you”

(John 17:1)

In one of His final and most significant prayers Jesus makes it clear that His overriding purpose was to glorify God – to honour Him and bring glory to His Name.

What was a priority for Jesus must therefore also be a priority in our own lives and relationship with God. This is why worship is so important. In it we remember before God His glory, majesty, grace and love and the awe-inspiring deeds that He has performed – from creation to salvation. We remind ourselves of who He is and what He has done, and honour Him as the One who has revealed Himself in these ways.

However, as Jesus Himself showed so clearly, worship is not merely the words that we speak but the lives that we live as well. For us the worship that proceeds from our mouths needs to both come from lives that have begun to be lived in honour of God as well as inspiring us to carry on and live such lives in the future.

It is so easy for our prayers to resemble a shopping list of needs and wants rather than an intimate conversation with a Father who loves us and wants to be loved by us. When this is the case it can happen that fear is often our motivation rather than faith. When we make worship a part of our daily conversation with God it reminds us of who and what He is and is like. This then lays a foundation of faith which makes all the difference.

When worship becomes a natural part of our lives it can seem to open us to the very presence of God both within and around us – a holy of holies in which we become very still and quiet, full of the knowledge of the presence of the Almighty.


Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord God Almighty – who was and is and is to come.


Come to Me

“If anyone is thirsty,
 let him come to me and drink”
(John 7:37)

This invitation occurs at different times in Scripture.

  • “Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost” (Isaiah 55:1)
  • “On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink” (John 7:37)
  • “Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life” (Revelation 22:17)

When Jesus met the woman at the well in Samaria He recognised in her a great and unquenched thirst – something that all her different relationships had not been able to satisfy.  He did not then add His judgement to her own and that of her society – He offered instead a lasting solution in the living water of new life in the Spirit.

  • “Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life” (John 4:13-14)

 Each one of us has carried within us a deep thirst for something – something that will give meaning, significance, purpose and beauty to our lives. And we are surrounded by people who have within them this thirst – which is really a thirst for love – that has never been satisfied.

People try to quench it in many different ways as they seek to give expression and meaning to this great craving. They can strive for power, wealth and status but it is not enough. They crave satisfaction for their lusts but nothing lasts. Others withdraw into an inner darkness and weep out the pain of their terrible loneliness and failure from which they cannot seem to escape. Some flee the pain for short periods in substance abuse which makes them feel even worse. Others exist from day to day.

Everywhere there are people consciously and unconsciously seeking a solution and a satisfaction. And no matter what level of society they inhabit there is nothing that lasts – it all turns to ashes.

Yet still this voice echoes down through the ages, “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink.”  There is one and only one true and lasting solution capable of meeting every one of our deep longings and needs – and it is found in the saving love and grace of God expressed in the life, death and resurrection of His Son and in the intimate and free gift of the Holy Spirit.

“Come to Me” – not once but in every moment of our lives, in every situation, with every need and longing. “Come to Me” – not for what He can do but for who He is.  “Come to Me” – not to visit but to stay. “Come to Me” – not to beg but to ask. “Come to Me” – not to hope but to trust. “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)

He is not a truth but a Person. He is not a concept but a reality. He is a beginning, and the end and every part of the journey. He is always and everywhere and everything. He is Love and Strength, Healing and Truth. And He is the most beautiful Life that it is possible to know.

The journey starts (again) now – reach out to Him.


Lord Jesus – I need You and I want You so much. Please pour Your Spirit into me and never stop. Please pour Your Love through Him without ceasing. Please help me to receive and to go on receiving forever. Amen.


Come Closer

“You diligently study the Scriptures
because you think that by them you possess eternal life.
These are the Scriptures that testify about me,
yet you refuse to come to me to have life”
(John 5:39-40)

There is a huge difference between knowing a lot about someone and knowing them personally. The first is a question of information whilst the second is a matter of relationship. Likewise there is an enormous difference between knowing of a truth and living it. These two come together in Jesus Christ who referred to Himself as ‘the Truth.’ To know of Him is not necessarily life-changing. To know Him is.

To have real value our knowledge of Jesus must develop through our relationship with Him. Likewise, the truth that He taught and revealed has no lasting effect in our lives unless it is received and lived. Jesus is not merely a subject for intellectual exercise and philosophical debate. He is God – to be worshipped, loved, trusted and obeyed.

No one can enter into a relationship with the Lord on our behalf – it is very personal both for us and for Him. It commences with His reaching out to us. We either acknowledge, accept and obey Him or we don’t.  He has entrusted us with His life, He asks us to entrust Him with ours.

Love is a Person – “God is Love.”

Truth is a Person – “I am the Truth.”

Life is a Person – “I am the Life.”

All of these are of the one, true and living God whose desire for us is that we should be His eternal sons and daughters. There needs to be a personal acceptance of the invitation – an acceptance not merely in words but in the way we relate to Him and live our lives.

To live the Love, the Truth and the Life that God gives us is to move into a deepening relationship with Him so that something of who He is becomes revealed in and through us. This is the unity to which Jesus was referring in the picture of the Vine (John 15) and for which He prayed (John 17).

Jesus spoke of knocking at the door of our lives and waiting to be invited in (Rev 3:20). Paul exhorted his readers to be filled with the Holy Spirit (Eph 5:18). Both of these refer to the living reality of the Living God in both our personal and corporate lives – and not just information and a legalistic obedience.

May this be a year where we seek and find, ask for and receive, a deeper and more vibrant relationship with our wonderful Lord and God.  It is something that He desires.

“If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
(Luke 11:13)

Ask God every day to deepen and bless your relationship with Him, to help you live His way and to say no to sin.


Lord Jesus help me please to seek, know and live out a deeper and more living relationship with You. Amen.






“If we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves
and the truth is not in us.
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just
and will forgive us our sins
and purify us from all unrighteousness.”
(1 John 1:8-9)


Sin separates. It separates us from God, it separates us from others, it separates us from ourselves, and it separates us from who we could be. Sin destroys peace.

Most importantly sin is an offence against God. It needs, firstly, to be acknowledged and dealt with at that level. Until it is there will be no peace or sense of intimacy with Him. He is the only one who is able to forgive, cleanse and heal our spirits in a way that makes a difference and sets us free.

Jesus cried out upon the cross, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing

He did not wish His crucifiers to be condemned to bear the burden of sin and guilt forever. In fact, the purpose of God is to forgive and to set us free so that we might live life to the full. Sin is indeed terrible, none more so than this, but Jesus came to set us free, not to enslave us.

God is both willing and able to forgive us – and that means He will remove the guilty stain from our spirits completely, whatever the worldly consequences might be or have been. He can do this, not because sin does not matter, but because Jesus stood in for us, and has carried these sins, your sins and mine, with Him to the cross. What is required is a sincere repentance, acknowledgement of Jesus death for my sins, and a prayerful resolve to turn away from such sins in the future. Whilst there may be a number of failures along the way God will be there with us to help us up again and to carry on with Him. With the knowledge of God’s forgiveness we may also forgive ourselves.

He has given us an awesome and life-changing gift. We need to accept it and the new life that it brings. Why not?

Be still for a moment – allow God to bring to mind areas in your life that need forgiveness and liberation. Then ask Him. Start the new year free from the stains of the past.


Father, I confess that I have sinned in these ways…….. please forgive me. I acknowledge that I battle in the following areas….. please forgive and strengthen me. Please help me to accept your forgiveness and cleansing and, empowered by the Holy Spirit, to walk with You, and to know that You walk with me. And no matter how many times I fall please help me to always get up again and go on with You. Thank You so much for giving me this wonderful gift of new life.Amen.




The Right Way

“I am the way and the truth and the life.
No one comes to the Father except through me”
(John 14:6)

Jesus is the only way to God the Father. He was quite clear about this.

  • “No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6)

The full implications of that statement might surprise us. However, what is clear is that without the ministry, death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ no one in all of creation would be able to enter into the presence of God and enjoy eternal life with Him. The way to God that was closed through sin would remain closed for all eternity.

Not only has Jesus opened the way to God once again but He and He alone is that Way – as well as being all the Truth that we will ever need and the Life for which we long.

  • “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6)

This is highlighted elsewhere in Scripture as it shows very clearly that our salvation is through faith in the Lord Jesus and not though any efforts of our own.

  • “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16)
  • Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God– children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God” (John 1:12-13)
  • Jesus answered, “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.”(John 6:29)

The work that God sent His Son – the Word made flesh – to do was completed during His earthly ministry.

  • “so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it” (Isaiah 55:11)
  • “Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit” (John 19:30)

Jesus Christ is our life, our new life and our eternal life.

  • “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of men” (John 1:1-4)
  • “The Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29)
  • “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die” (John 11:25-26)
  • “In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am” (John 14:2-3)

Prayer Response:

Lord Jesus, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”  (Mark 9:24) – and to live in belief every day. Amen.