Love in my heart
Hope ~ Peace ~ Joy ~ Love = Christ
Most of us as we reflect on these four simple words could share countless stories of their meaning and significance. What does it mean to hope in or for something? How do we define peace? Does joy come and go? Or is it built into our foundation? And what is this thing called love? Do we even know love in the truest and most innocent of ways?
We can strive to know these four words in our intellect, and seek to live it out emotionally in our own strength but something tends to be missing in that translation of self actualization. We can know and live these four words out in our lives with a human perspective but something changes when Jesus Christ is added in.
I remember when I walked independently in my own strength. I had experienced Jesus, God and the Holy Spirit at one point in my life, but I liked my sin more than the dogmatic rhetoric that I felt I was hearing in the Church and so I sought to live my life out my way. I was relatively good. I would have told you that I knew hope, peace, joy and love and that I put those into practice in my life. But as I came to realize several years later, I only knew these words superficially but I didn’t really ‘know’ them…until I began walking out some pretty tough situations.
Jesus Christ put love in my heart and this is where it began. This love relationship that I began experiencing drew me into a deepening relationship with the Holy Trinity and I needed this foundation to see me through some storms in life.
How do you have hope as you face infertility? How does peace reign in your body as you struggle with addiction? What does joy look like as you see a loved one in pain 24/7? Where is the love?
These are things I faced and these are the questions that have begun to grow a deeper understanding of these four words. This has been a wrestle and to be honest I am still working with some of these words as I face certain situations in my life, but a good work has begun with my submission to Jesus and the work done on the cross. God said He would complete the good work that He started in me and that I could trust Jesus. I may not have all the answers to my questions, but what I do know is that in this love relationship, I have hope that God knows everything and that He will see me through all my struggles. I know that He gives a peace that transcends all understanding and that it can rule my heart. I’ve realized that joy is deeper than an emotion, it is strength that comes from the Lord.
There may be some of you who are reading this and you have no clue about this man Jesus. You might know hope, peace, joy, love: but do you really know it? Maybe you sense there is something missing and maybe you are interested in knowing more about Jesus and the way he can put his love in your heart!
You might be feeling alone, tired, thirsty for deeper meaning. If this is where you find yourself at, we encourage you to come to Church. The Church isn’t a perfect place…far from it. What you should find in a Church are real people who are seeking after Jesus. People who are hungry and thirsty to know more about following Jesus and people seeking a deeper revelation of who he is and who we are to him. You won’t find perfect people, but hopefully you will find honest people who are facing struggles and pain, those who are rejoicing and those who are mourning.
This advent season, come and experience Jesus and His love for you.