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Love With Boldness

June 1, 2014

On September 15th I’m starting a new series at Imago Dei called Compelled by Love based on the text in 2Corinthians 5 where Paul explains his ministry as being driven by the love of Christ. The scriptures always call us back to love as the starting point and the ending point of everything.

So many times we get trapped in duty, which is a place we may need to start from but it’s a horrible place to end. Jesus started with love. Love that he experienced and expressed from his relationship with the Father, and love that pours over into our lives through his death and resurrection.

What are you compelled by? It’s a tough question but one that we need to wrestle with.

There are three things that get in the way of being compelled by love.

Self-protection, Self-reliance, and Self-centeredness.

Self-protection causes us to see love as something we have to go get, and when we get it we have to keep it, but that never works. The nature of love is self-giving, not self protecting. Jesus didn’t protect himself from us; he gave himself for us. Big difference.

Self-reliance causes us to depend on our own skills and resources to accomplish the life that is put in front of us. We never end up compelled by love when we are self-reliant because we are too busy dealing with our own skills and resources. How do we make ourselves better so we don’t have to depend anyone or anything? Jesus was dependant on the Father and trusted the father with every ounce of his being. He laid down those skills and abilities that he could rely on when he took on our humanity. Jesus made himself in the form of a servant and trusted the Father to take care of the rest. He relied on the father not on himself. If Jesus needed to do that how much more do we need to?

Self-centered people don’t have time to be compelled by love for other people because they are spending all their energy looking at themselves. If anyone could have been self-centered it would have been Jesus. He was the Creator of the universe, the beloved Son of the Father, the only sinless human to ever walk the earth. But he wasn’t self-centered. He was other-centered, and that compelled him to live a life of sacrificial love.

Jesus was compelled by love for you, and when you taste that revolutionary power of love then it overflows from you to others. It builds a fire in you that burns with love for other people and compels you to love with boldness.

-Rick McKinley

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