On September 5th, 2010 I was at church reluctantly sitting on the front row next to my friend, Linda Riddle. Pastor was just getting started with his message when she leaned over and asked me where my Bible was. I had no idea where my Bible was and to be quite honest at that point in my life I was a bit lost and I hadn’t opened a Bible in a while. I shrugged my best, “I don’t know” at her and she smiled back. Within a few seconds she plopped a brand new Bible in my lap and whispered, “Here, this is for you.” I opened the Bible and inside she had written the following…
Occasion: Because I Love you.
That moment changed my life. That Bible rocked my world. I highlighted every page, I read every book and it went with me everywhere for three years until last Wednesday ( almost 3 years to the date ) the Lord asked me to I give it away. I won’t lie it was difficult to give away. But I was being obedient to what I felt the Holy Spirit was telling me. Honest Moment: I wasn’t very happy about it. I was not like Linda who gave it freely, I was actually pretty mad at God about it. As I laid in bed that night I dialogued with my creator like I usually do…Well, mostly I complained and He listened.
God, that Bible was priceless to me! It was a gift!
Lord, how could you ask me to give it away? It’s been with me through some heavy stuff!
How do I know that the person I gave it to will appreciate the value of what you asked me to give!??
and then He replied like He always does:
“I gave my son to the world. He was priceless to me. I gave Him knowing that people wouldn’t receive him, or understand His value. There is no gray area with loving people …. Love see’s past the now and see’s the future. Either you love with everything ( including the things you hold dear ) or you don’t love at all. “
UGH….I say I love people all the time but the moment I was asked to give away more than what I was prepared for my love became conditional. I stayed up pretty late that night praying and asking the Lord to search my heart. I asked God to mold me into a person that loves without question and see’s people the way Jesus did. I am so thankful that God continues to press me from every side and that He continuously pursues my heart.
But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love. 1 Cor. 13:13 (Message)