#376 Empowering Love
I was tired and resentful because cooking and clean up were taking so much time. Like the lights on the dashboard of a car, such feelings carry an important message and can be a sign to re-evaluate. I quickly realized that I am the one who set up the situation, refusing help when it was offered because I wanted to be of the greatest service. How easy it is for me to resent a situation even when I was the one who set up the situation!
The LORD led me to consider my boundaries and the verse in Proverbs 22:28 came to mind:
“Do not move an ancient boundary stone set up by your forefathers.”
The landmark (or boundary stone) may be a spiritual standard, established by our spiritual forefathers, God-honoring and God-blessed. There is always a tendency for each new generation to try to modernize the ways of their fathers and, in view of the universal law of decay, this is more often a mistake.
I thank God for the ancient boundary stones expressed in His Word. Psalm 119 is best known as being the longest chapter in the Bible but it’s also a chapter that constantly reinforces the Psalmist’s love for God’s spiritual boundary stones with verses such as, “Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long” Psalm 119:97
May the Lord give us a love for His Word and His boundary stones along with a resolve to abide by them even when others seek to move them. Dr. Ken Baker
And the LORD led me to consider the difference between Empowering love and Enabling love.
The love of 1 Corinthians 13 is the highest form of love, agape love, and it is meant to result in Highest Good and Eternal blessing. It is a description of the Love of God and Christ. 1 Corinthians 13 is sandwiched between 1 Corinthians 12 and 14, which also have powerful lessons on the practical side of how we engage with and effect others in view of agape love. “But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.” 1 Corinthians 12:7 Agape love is certainly a love that looks beyond narrow issues to the broader bigger picture of blessing. 1 Corinthians 12 teaches the diversity of the body, the necessity of the diversity, and the contribution and necessity of every part. 1 Corinthians 14 teaches a similar lesson: “seek to abound for the edification of the church.” (verse 12)
His expressions of love and help lead us to increase and grow. “You make your saving help my shield, and your right hand sustains me; your help has made me great.” Psalm 18:35 NIV
The Lord has led me to ask these questions as I desire to form boundaries in harmony with His will.
Will this decision create unhealthy dependence?
Will this decision take away or add to another’s personal dignity?Will this decision create a load that would be better shared?
How can I create a team or family spirit?
Will this decision detract from the team spirit or the family spirit of working together to accomplish a goal?
Does this decision rob another person of experiencing the teaching tools of natural consequences?
Now that by your obedience to the truth you have purified yourselves and have come to have a sincere love for other believers, love one another earnestly with all your heart. 1 Peter 1:22 GNB
Make me to know your ways, O Lord;
teach me your paths.
Lead me in your truth and teach me,
for you are the God of my salvation;
for you I wait all the day long. Psalm 25:4-5 ESV