All right, thank you Ashton. Good morning everyone, I’m blessed to be with you once again here on communion connection. I hope I this morning finds you well. I’m excited to go to church and worship with my fellow believers and teach our kids and children’s church. I know we’re going through a series right now teaching them about the different books of the Bible and it’s just been a lot of fun working with the kids. Seeing who has had some prior training and who is learning this stuff for the very first time. I can’t wait to come together and worship, but for now we get this chance to spend some time together here to have a devotional and to take communion together.
Just wanted to remind you real quick, it sure would be a blessing to Erin and Arielle over there at sunshine juice, if you could go in and check them out and get some organic juice and spend some time with them. I know it’d be a real blessing to them and it’ll be a blessing to your body.
So I wanted to talk to you today about the idea of love. Now I know , love, love, love, love, love. Everyone talks about love. Movies are talking about love, songs are talking about love, books are talking about love. It is a very, very common subject and yet I think first of all, many of us still struggle to operate in it. And not only that, but we’re being bombarded by the world telling us what love is and what we’re seeing doesn’t always seem to match up with the Bible. I wanted to cover love. This isn’t going to be so much of a deep dive into the subject. We could probably do a series on love for the next 6,8,10,12 weeks.
I just wanted to go over something that we covered in our men’s meeting this morning. I was able to teach and share the devotion and this brought up this idea that, you know, it says in John 13:35 that they will know that we are his disciples, Him being Jesus, they’ll know we’re His disciples by our love. And it just really got me thinking, do I demonstrate a kind of love in my life that would have people, outsiders, nonbelievers saying, wow, something’s really different about that guy or does my life look more pretty much like their’s looks. You know in Luke 6:32 there’s a scripture that says, you know, what does it profit you if you love your family or if you love those who love you? Basically it says even sinners do that. You can’t really just use, well look at this love I have for my wife or my kids or you know, my grandkids as a standard to hold up and say, see, I’m demonstrating love because ultimately even the world is doing that well.
I believe that this love that the Lord is actually talking about is, is more of a love. It’s something that we can’t accomplish in and of ourselves. And it talks about in Galatians the fruit of the spirit, which of course is: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. And so that very first thing that’s listed is love. Now if love like the Bible is talking about, is a fruit of the spirit, a demonstration of the spirit of God being in our lives. Obviously this love is something more than what we can produce. It’s not a fruit of the flesh, in fact, prior to listing the fruit of the spirit, Paul gives us a list of things that the flesh produces and none of them are even close to love. So this love that we are going to show in the world, they’ll see that we are his followers.
We are His disciples. This is something that God has to produce in us. Now that doesn’t let us off the hook from trying or repenting when we not acted lovingly. But ultimately we need to foster our relationship with him, spend time with him in prayer, in the word and worship. The Holy spirit in us will begin to cultivate things like love and patience and peace and joy. So, you know, I just wanted to share a quick testimony and just tell you, you know, even as seasoned believers, it’s real easy to get this thing wrong and not demonstrate love to the world. In fact, sometimes we as believers can have a way of really showing off sorta real self-centeredness. We ended up believing that, you know, we’re children of the King in that gives us certain rights and such.
So, yesterday my wife was having one of the hardest days that she’s had in a very, very long time. And so I wanted to be able to minister to her and I was going to rush through traffic and go to Starbucks and buy her a pumpkin spice latte because you know, she’s one of those pumpkin spice girls. I wanted to be where she was going to be in time to deliver it to her as a way of being a blessing to her. But you know, everything was coming against me. Traffic was just horrible. There’s a lot of road construction in my city. And then once I got to the Starbucks, the line was long. I was doing anything but demonstrating love. You know, I wasn’t cussing anybody out or, or you know, yelling and shouting at them. But just in my heart and my mind, I was not, I was not being loving. I was thinking impatient thoughts. I was thinking angry thoughts. I had a plan and I wanted to see it fall into place and all these people were just barriers in my way to accomplishing my goal. And so the Lord just really began to show me where I was in error, where I was wrong about how it wasn’t good enough to just demonstrate love to my wife but that I needed to show that to the world around me in the process.
So I hope this just really ministers to someone that, you know, this is a walk. This is a journey with the Lord and know we were sanctified when we came to him. Sanctification is also a process that the Lord is making us more and more like him and perfecting us in the word says that he who began a good work in us as faithful to carry it out to completion. We are becoming more like him as we go along, but I just want to encourage you with that, that the world is dying to see people who love, who demonstrate a love within the church. That instead of a place where there’s backbiting and bickering and, and gossip. There’s a place where there’s a true genuine love, where there’s the kind of family and belonging that these people have long for in they’re seeing it in the church. So I hope this will just inspire you to take a look at your life and, and just maybe double back on this issue and look at it again and repent where repentance is needed and recommit your life to be a demonstration of his love to the world.
So with that, let me go ahead and read communion for the week. As you guys know by now. We’re reading in first Corinthians 11 and we’ll start out in verse 23 it says, for I received from the Lord and that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night, which he was betrayed, took bread when he had given thanks. He broke it and said, this is my body, which is for you. Do this in remembrance of me, Jesus, even in this time when we just took a little bit to consider love, we know that what you did for us is the most loving thing that someone could possibly do and even says in your word, greater love has no man than this to lay down his life for another and you came and your body was broken and you laid down your life so that we could be redeemed. We just thank you for that Jesus, for that sacrifice. In your precious name, I pray. Amen. Let’s take the bread.
In the same way he took the cup also after supper saying, this cup is the new covenant in my blood. Do this as often as you drink it in remembrance of me for as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord’s death until he comes. Lord, I thank you that in your love you came and you shed your blood. Your heart was to redeem us, to reconcile us, to bring us back into relationship with you. It’s like when you walked with Adam and Eve in the garden, your heart was to walk with us again and through the of your blood you made that possible, taking our sin on the cross, paying that debt for us so we can be restored. We thank you again and again and again. We thank you for all you’ve done. We love you Lord Jesus, help us to love our brothers, help us to love the family of God and help us to so love the world like you did father and sent your only son so we could believe in you and have everlasting life. Jesus and your beautiful, Holy and precious name I pray, amen.
Thank you guys for thank you for taking this time to come and celebrate communion with us. I pray that your week is blessed. Would you go to www.thecommunionconnection.com and just a look around the website a little. You can listen to the, to the podcast straight from there. There’s also transcripts that we post on the website so that if you like to read out what you have just listened to, you can read it and take down notes from it. We do have a resource page where you can get some communion wafers and drinks, makes it very convenient to take it at home. And there’s also an about me page where you can learn a little bit about my wife and I and we. So we just love for you to join us on the website. Now. I pray that you would go and the blessing of the Lord and enjoy your week and let the love of the Lord shine through you. Ashton, can you take us out.