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Wednesday, September 23, 2009

love and joy

The cornerstone, the loadstone, the thing without which nothing else matters, its' importance cannot be over-emphaszied. The requirement for this fruit to grow is the submission to the loving, pruning hand of the Master-gardener. His goal will be the death-to-self, the voluntary "deny himself," that truly sets us free to love. Love truly is freedom, freedom from the worst kind of bondage - bondage to our own lusts.
Grace has lovingly reached out to our lives. Our reception of that love is the trigger to release its' outflow in our lives. The only hope of giving love is abiding IN the love that God gives us. Humiity is a requirement. You only get what you admit you need and ask for. A lack of love can be traced to a lack of humility. Pride blocks love. Pride tries to look like love at times, being "generous, kind and sacrificial," but God is not mocked. The white-washed tomb has never fooled Him. Scripture tells us exactly what love is, as we admit our lack, the Father will fill us.

Joy is a fruit that grows abundantly on a tree that is content to know the will of God and do it. It cares not about the "success" of the work, the appearance or image that is presented. If ia am about my Father's business, it is enough. In that is my joy. Joy is deeper than happiness. It is so deep that it is untouchable by the circumstances that pummel huppiness inot oblivion. Joy speaks of an inner knowing that we are "known" by God. "I am my beloved's and my beloved is mine." That is the ultimate statement of joy. It flows from an intimacy with the God who "dances" over us. We can find joy only in union with God. This treasure becomes more and more unshakeable as we rest in the will of God for our lives. It leaves when we are trying to be what anyone other than God wants us to be.

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