WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 4
“Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love…And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect.”
1 John 4:7-8, 17 (NLT2)
SIGNS OF LIFE IN CHRIST: I AM GROWING IN LOVE
In the 1920s there was a young African American child who was growing up in Cleveland. One day a famous athlete named Charlie Paddock, came to his school to speak to the students. At the time Paddock was considered “the fastest human being alive.” He told the children, “Listen! What do you want to be? You name it and then believe that God will help you be it.”
That little boy decided that he wanted to be the fastest human being on earth. The boy went to his track coach and told him of his new dream. His coach told him, “It’s great to have a dream, but to attain your dream you must build a ladder to it. Here is the ladder to your dreams. The first rung is determination! And the second rung is dedication! The third rung is discipline! And the fourth rung is attitude!” The result of all that motivation is that he went on to win four gold medals in the 1936 Berlin Olympics. He won the 100 meter dash and broke the Olympic and world records for the 200 meter. His broad jump record lasted for twenty-four years. His name was Jesse Owens.
One of the sure signs that we are in Christ is that we have spiritual growth as a goal. 1 John 4 teaches that growing in love is one of those spiritual goals. John writes, “as we live in God, our love grows more perfect.” None of us have perfected love. If we are honest we all struggle with loving certain people or groups of people at times. However, the difference for a Christian is that we want to get better at loving.
The bible makes it clear that we don’t earn a place in God’s family because it’s a gift we simply receive by faith. However, the bible also makes it clear when we are in God’s family we will put forth the effort to grow and love the way Jesus loves. Can you think of a person or group of people that you need to grow in your love toward? Can you think of ways you can put forth more effort to show them love?