Yet I hold this against you: you have lost the love you had at firstRevelations 2:4
Have you lost your first love? Jesus asks us if we still love Him the way we used to initially. We have a God who loves us, despite the circumstance. Yet, somewhere, the love we had for Him has gotten lost. Where there is love, there is joy. If there is no joy in your home or your church, it means there is no love there. Joy at its true form emerges from love.
How to rekindle our first love? By obeying His first commandment: “to love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.” Often, we misunderstand problems to be God’s way of punishing us. God gives us problems and tough times to give us enough and more opportunities to come back to the Lord and love Him like we did. To reclaim the vitality of anything, you must go back to its beginning. Reminiscing the beginning of our relationship with God will rekindle the love we had for Him. Our love affair with the Lord began at the cross.
For God so loved the world, He gave His only begotten son….John 3:16
Often, when our prayers are unanswered, Satan tells us God does not love us enough, just like how he told Eve. It is important for us to understand that God withholds answers to our prayers for a certain period, however, He does not withhold anything from us for eternity. If at all your prayer is unanswered, it is because He has a better plan to answer it – something that we are not able to fathom with our confined imagination. When you look at the cross, you see a God who has given you the ultimate gift. The greatest gift one could give is their son – He has already given us His best, His only son. Jesus, with His arms outstretched, is telling us how He has given His blood, His body, and even His last breath for us.
Often, we think of ourselves at the receiving end – to receive His blessings and His gifts. God will give you what you need in His time. But it should not just be a give-and-take relationship; it should be a mutual relationship where both parties receive. Submit your body, your time, and your finance to God.
In an imaginative sense, God made mankind, Christ positioned all the nerve endings in the wrist and ankle, to which God asked Him if it was a good idea (since years later, when Christ dies for the sin of men He created, He will have to endure all the pain when His wrists and ankles are nailed). Christ suffered all the pain of the humanity. Often, when we think that God is being ignorant about our pain, He is not. He feels us and is passionate about us – when we are in pain, He is in pain too. Since He gave us His all, only if we give Him our all, will we go back to the first love we had for Him. God did not love us with 99% of His heart, He loved us with 100% of His heart. How much do we give Him in return?
Death did not take His life, love did. An author wrote, “Jesus wrote His love in crimson red”. Only if you look at the cross, will you see the love at the cross. Despite our evil nature and everything we have done wrong, He continues to love us. Not only did He die for us, He washed and purified us with His blood. Another author wrote “I drew His blood and He washed me with it”. God is very passionate about us; are we passionate about Him? People yawn and sleep at the church due to the lack of passion. God did not get nailed in his wrists and ankles to see His bride yawn at His face on Sunday mornings.
The cross reveals us how dark sin is – it reveals us How God hates it. The cross is so intense because it reveals the incredible value of humanity. To restore us back from sin and death, God had to get crucified – it represents the value of mankind. We feel insecure and think we are worth nothing, but God is telling us how valuable and precious we are to Him. Just like how the merchant sold everything to buy pearls, God leaves everything behind for us. The cross represents the extravaganza of His love – the extent to which He loves sinners (the crazy love of The Father). He loves us more than anybody can, in the craziest way, in such a way that we cannot fathom the depth of it. This love helped restore, us, sinners and brought us back to life. Historically, crucifixion was the most unjust event. Being the most supreme judge, God did not justify unjust with unjust – He could have burnt everything that He had created, but instead, He chose to purify us by His blood and save us from death.