Houston Forward Times

25 June 2014 Written by  Pastor E A Deckard

LOVE IS A FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT

"Love is a force more formidable than any other. It is invisible - it cannot be seen or measured, yet it is powerful enough to transform you in a moment, and offer you more joy than any material possession could." - Barbara de Angelis


Forward Thinkers as I observe the affairs of this world from the kidnapping of 219 girls in Nigeria, the continued threat of war with Iraq, and the ongoing racial tensions in America it is obvious this world needs more love. Not more wars, not more racism, or more political battles, but more love.

Forward Thinkers Burt Bacharach and Hal David teamed up in 1965 and created a song, "I believe we should sing all over the world until there is no more hate, war, or killing". I know that this is a big dream but, I also know love is the most powerful tool known to mankind.

 

What the world needs now is love, sweet love, It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of
What the world needs now is love, sweet love no, not just for some but for everyone

Lord, we don’t need another mountain There are mountains and hillsides enough to climb
There are oceans and rivers enough to cross Enough to last until the end of time

What the world needs now is love, sweet love It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of
What the world needs now is love, sweet love No, not just for some but for everyone

Lord, we don’t need another meadow There are corn fields and wheat fields enough to grow
There are sunbeams and moonbeams enough to shine Oh, listen Lord, if You want to know

What the world needs now is love, sweet love It’s the only thing that there’s just too little of
What the world needs now is love, sweet love No, not just for some, oh but just for every, every, everyone 

 

Forward Thinkers the Apostle Paul writes about love and the freedom to choose love in 1 Corinthians Chapter 13. This body of scripture is often referred to as the love chapter of the bible. The New Testament uses several Greek words for the word love. The focus of 1 Corinthians Chapter 13 is agape. Agape is a God-like love that is holy. Agape love is seen as an act of the will and is not based on feelings or circumstances.

Forward Thinkers remember we are no longer slaves but sons and daughters of God therefore we are free to make choices. I pray we choose love over selfish desires. 1Corinthians 13:4-7 describes 15 traits of love. In Greek all 15 of these words are verbs.

Love is something we must do (love God-love others-love self) LOVE IS SOMETHING WE MUST give and receive

Forward Thinkers there is no way to be a child of God and not love all God’s children. Remember according to 1 John 4:16 God is love.

Love Suffers Long (patient)

Forward Thinkers love requires a great deal of patience. Jesus displayed this principle in Mark 14:32-42 when he asked his disciples to watch and pray while he went a little farther ahead to pray. When Jesus returned they were asleep but he displayed love and instead of ‘going off on them’ he used the occasion to teach them responsibility. We must remember the love and patience Jesus has for us and began to operate with this same level of long suffering towards others.

love is kind

Forward Thinkers love is kind therefore we must begin to display kindness to all people. It is easy to be kind to friendly people but we must have unlimited kindness even towards negative unfriendly people. I know this is hard but if we are to be the light of the world we must learn how to outshine the darkness. Daily we are tested in our love walk of kindness by rude and selfish people but we must rise above their attitude and walk in Godly kindness.

love does not envy

Forward Thinkers envy is not a trait of God therefore there can be no envy in love. In Luke 15:28-30 older brother of prodigal son displayed envy towards his younger brother because of the grace he received from their Father. We must celebrate one another and not allow envy or jealousy to creep into our spirit. We must be thankful to God for all He has done for us and not focus on what He has done for others. God is big enough to bless you and me at the same time and still have enough to be able to bless someone else.

love does not brag

Forward Thinkers the object of love is never selfishness therefore love never brags. When we brag on ourselves we are putting others down and love never acts like that. God kind of love is other conscious rather than self-conscious. Love should cause us to encourage others and not put others down. Whenever we operate in the spirit of self the enemy comes in and plays tricks on us turning us against one another. Mature thinkers realize their ‘greatness’ will be noticed by others without us reminding others of how great we are.

love is not arrogant

Forward Thinkers love is not inflated with pride (Proverbs 16:18). We must walk in a humble spirit and not in the spirit of this world. The spirit of this world specializes in dividing and conquering. Whenever we operate in an arrogant spirit it causes us to separate ourselves from others which produce hatred, prejudices, and racism. We must learn to love in spite of our differences and stop hating others because we don’t understand why we are different. Arrogance leaves no room for discussion or as the bible says a meeting of the minds to come into the spirit of agreement.

love does not act unbecomingly

Forward Thinkers we must mature to the point where we no longer choose to declare ‘the devil made me do it’ but operate in a fruit of the spirit so strong we choose to overcome evil with love. We can’t continue to respond like the world if we desire to win the world. In Luke 4:28-30 Jesus is under great attack but instead of displaying an unbecoming spirit He operates in the fruit of the spirit by remaining calm, cool, and collected under pressure. Remember we are no longer slaves and every time we allow someone to take us ‘there’ we are in effect allowing them to be our master. We must be more like Jesus and choose to take the high road.

VII. LOVE BEARS ALL THINGS

Forward Thinkers love bears all things. Jesus did not give up on Peter after Peter failed the test. We must understand everybody will fall short every now and then but love is strong enough to pick them back up. Jesus could have disqualified Peter but instead He operates in the fruit of the spirit and restores Peter. Make it a habit not to give up on people but to build up people. Remember you never know when you will be on the receiving end of love bears all things.

VIII. LOVE NEVER FAILS

Forward Thinkers the only fail proof object we have in this world is love. The bible says love never fails therefore we must operate in the unfailing spirit of love at all times. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. says "love is the only force in the universe strong enough to turn an enemy into a friend".

Pastor E. A. Deckard is the Senior Pastor/Founder of the Green House International Church located, 16711 Ella Blvd. Houston, Texas, 77090. To contact Pastor Deckard for speaking engagements contact him at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .