Many of you who have been around the Christian circuit for a while have heard about agape love. Many of you will say that agape love represents God's unconditional love toward us. Did you know that our word "agony" comes from the word agape? Alan Redpath defines it as "the actual absorption of our being in one great passion." The same work is used to describe man's love of sin and the world in John 3:19 and I John 2:15.
As Pastor Chuck explained it today, when you look at it that way - we all need a heart transplant and a blood transfusion! The infections of our heart - anger, envy, pride, jealousy, selfishness - can not simply be removed. The heart must be opened up. Each infectious part must be cleansed and the heart allowed to heal before it can function usefully again. We know that only God's love has the healing power to make this happen. It's that love that we then need to express to others. It must live in every crevice of our heart, replacing the infectious, rotting flesh of our sin in order to shine through us to others.
We know in I Corinthians 13 it says Faith, Hope and Love, but the greatest of these is Love. I ask you: Can you have Faith and Hope but not have Love? Of course you can! Many who do not believe in God have faith in other people and things. They still have hope for their uncertain future. But they can never have the agape love that God uses to heal our hearts. That love that exudes from those who fully trust in Him and allow Him to slice open their hearts and cleanse them with the love His Son poured out on the cross. That love doesn't exist without Him. Without the Faith in an everlasting Messiah. Without the Hope of an eternity at His feet.
What infections have you been harboring in your heart?
Lord, I have been selfish with the time and resources You have allotted me. At times this selfishness has led to laziness, anger, envy and jealousy. Please help me to adjust the microscope of Your Love to focus fully on You. Remove the infections of my heart through the cleansing power of Your blood and replace it with the Faith of The Messiah who rose again, the Hope of an eternity with You and the agape Love of an all-powerful Saviour!