Feb
01

Can You Remember Your First Love?

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first love (2) Ah, the first love. The one who first consumed our hearts, our thoughts, our dreams. What do you remember about that one? Often thoughts of first love are mixtures of happy thoughts of hopes and dreams and painful memories of crushed hearts. Later we may wonder if it was really love at all because we more clearly identify the blind desires with which we embraced another in immaturity. Yet there is a reality of a first love that is true.

The apostle John wrote to the church of Ephesus to remind them of their first love experiences with God. He spoke these painful words to them, “…you have left your first love. Remember therefore from where you have fallen…” (Rev. 2:4-5).

Ouch. Those words must have stung when the believers at Ephesus read them. Left. Fallen. No fault on God’s part obviously. The Ephesian believers had moved away from the place of first love.

How did it happen?

They were still involved in working for God. “I know your works, your labor…”

Their lives still bore evidence of the fruit of His Spirit. “I know you patience, and that you cannot bear those who are evil. And you have tested those who say they are apostles and are not, and found them liars, and you have persevered and have patience, and have labored for My names’ sake and have not become weary.”  Patience. Discernment. Steadfastness.

But John’s indictment (and God’s indictment) rips through all the works and good stuff to the area that God’s Spirit was lasering in on. “Nevertheless, I have this against you, that you have left your first love.”

What did your first love experiences with God look like? I remember mine.

Hours and days and weeks and months of sensing God’s presence, being full of love for Him and others, the ease of worship and fasting and witnessing.

I am not speaking of an experience that is only emotional. Most of us have had those. Perhaps we heard a message preached and we recommitted to pursing God’s heart. Maybe we were motivated by guilt. Although God does indeed use our emotions and stirs us in our emotions, as the old saying goes, “The proof is in the pudding.”

What were the lasting results of your experience(s)?  A life changed is the proof that we have encountered God.

A verse that has resonated in my heart as of late is Jesus reminding those who appeared religious that they should bring forth fruit worthy of repentance.

True love bears fruit.

Where are you today spiritually? Has there ever been a time when your life bore more fruit? Ever been a time when the fires of first love burned brighter than today?

How do we engage God fully in first love? John told the Ephesians that they should “Remember where you’ve fallen from; repent and do the first works…” (Rev. 2:5).

Remember… we need to remember what it was like to experience the first love experiences with God. Although painful, we must remember where we’ve fallen from. Remembering stokes the fires of desire.

Repent… let go of all the things that have separated you and God. Turn from them.

Return…to the first works. The works that you did for God from a heart filled with love. Not works of obligation but works of love. Ah, they are so different.  One is dry and lifeless. The other life-giving.

So as you remember, can you imagine what your life would look like today if you were madly in love…with God? What would your life look like in revival? What would your marriage look like in revival? What would your children’s lives look like if they were pursuing God wholly? What would your friendships look like if God’s love and presence invaded your conversations? What would your life look like if your heart were wholly abandoned to God?

Can you imagine it? Will you dare to let your heart dream of it?

Remember, repent, return. Your first love awaits.

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Categories : love

Comments

  1. Akeela says:

    No matter how close we think we are to God, we need to return to Him. http://deeprevelations.blogspot.com/2016/03/return-to-your-first-love.html?m=1

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