Saturday, Dec. 21 – Kevin Kollock

21 Dec

Saturday, Dec. 21 – Love

Today’s Scripture:
John 14:19-23

19 “After a little while the world will no longer see Me, but you will see Me; because I live, you will live also.
20 “In that day you will know that I am in My Father and you in Me, and I in you.
21 “He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him.”
22 Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, “Lord, what then has happened that You are going to disclose Yourself to us and not to the world?”
23 Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our abode with him.”

When I first began to attend Broad River Community Church in 2004, my now wife Jaime and I were dating. We looked like your normal dating couple, well, except we were 6 months pregnant. We had committed the unforgiveable sin in the Bible belt. We were pregnant and not yet married. I was ashamed, but I had not grown up in Shelby, so it was easier for me to work through. It was harder for Jaime, I think, because she grew up in the area and everyone decided to judge her negatively. A lot of people wanted to judge us and not love us. Love is a very precarious word. Different communities and families use this word differently. Some thought in order to love us they had to remind us of the mistakes we made. Some decided that true love needed to make sure we knew what we did was wrong. Others decided to love us a let us open up about it when we felt comfortable. It made it hard to find a church because we had to explain our relationship, our sin, and our plans for the future every Sunday. This was all humiliating, and just thinking of having to explain it all for the “thousandth” time did not seem like fun. Going to church, fellowshipping with believers, and personal time with God seemed impossible because a lot of people wanted to dwell on our personal sin. Needless to say this was a very discouraging and embarrassing time for us. Thankfully, we found BRCC and the attendees at the church chose to love and accept us from day one.

In verses 19-23 Jesus talks about some core ideas of Love that Jaime and I had to identify with early on in our relationship. First, He mentions in verses 19-20 that we are in him and he is in us. Knowing that God still wanted to live in me was a really encouraging idea in this time, especially when people were reminding me of how far from God I was. I knew that even though I did a bad thing, God still loved me and was even closer than ever. His love and desire to be one with me was not dependent on my acts. He loved me without any conditions. His love was not based on my inability to obey him. Knowing that he did not desert me gave me hope to continue to strive in a one-on-one relationship with him.

The second part of this Love Christ is explaining unfolds in verses 21-23. This is the idea of how “keeping” his commandments creates a bond between the believer and Christ. To “keep” signifies the idea of observing and analyzing. When sports analysts watch a game, they look at all the details. They catch things that the untrained eye would never see. God is challenging us to take the oneness he has graciously given and apply a steady analysis of his words. This is what Jaime and I had to do during this season in our lives. Did God want us to study his word so we could learn the rules? No, it was so that we could deepen our love relationship with him. Our motivation to regularly analyze his word and apply it to our lives enhanced our love relationship with Christ. So much so that, as Jesus puts it in verse 21, “He disclosed himself to us.” When something is disclosed it comes into view. Slowly but surely what seems blurry becomes clearer and clearer. By observing God’s words, we put ourselves in a position to see his ways more clearly and to know him deeper. I realized that God does not tell us to not sin because he is the cosmic kill joy and wants us to know all the rules. He really has our best interest in the forefront of his thoughts. God’s love and protection are one of his top priorities, and that is why he warns us against sin.

This time of year we celebrate the birth of Christ, which is one of the main themes of the Advent season. Love is alive and ready to disclose himself. He wants to sustain us with his Love by placing Himself within us. No matter our situation, as we get to know him more we will know his ways more clearly. This is the message of LOVE!

-Kevin Kollock

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One Response to “Saturday, Dec. 21 – Kevin Kollock”

  1. John Kean December 21, 2013 at 3:02 pm #

    Thank you, Kevin.

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