International
Newsletter
February 2023

Jesus Said, “Love One Another” (is that really necessary?)

Oh, how important it is to be walking in the love of God – TODAY! The heart and core of the Bible is God’s love for us and His command to love Him and love our neighbor as ourselves. (John 3:16, Matthew 22:37-39)

No doubt you have noticed we are being confronted with many opportunities to get out of love toward others. It is the same for people worldwide. The current pressures and events will cause many people to get easily offended. However, harboring an offense prevents the love of God from operating through your life. God still loves you and wants the best for you, but your capacity to receive His love is restricted.

Love is a choice, not a feeling. You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. (Deuteronomy 6:5) This is “the first and great commandment” according to Jesus. (Matthew 22:38) We are commanded to love God. Thus, love is an action of the will, something we can choose to do or not to do. God’s love is self-sacrificing in order to benefit others. Jesus revealed it through His surrender. This is how we have discovered love’s reality: Jesus sacrificed his life for us. Because of this great love, we should be willing to lay down our lives for one another. (1 John 3:16 TPT)

Jesus said there would come a time when most peoples’ love will become cold. (Matthew 24:12) The battle is REAL – the battle is ON! It is God’s love moving us that advances His Kingdom in our homes, our neighborhoods, our cities, and in foreign lands. If the enemy is successful in getting us to turn our backs on God’s love – the advancement of His Kingdom is at best restrained – ultimately halted.

It has been said: When you love God and rejoice in that love, your desire for God will increase. The more you know Him, the more you will want to know Him, and the more you want to know Him, the more you will know Him. Similarly, the more you love Him, the more you will want to love Him, and the more you want to love Him, the more you will love Him. Finally, the more you serve Him, the more you will want to serve Him, and the more you want to serve Him, the more you will serve Him.

And never let ugly or hateful words come from your mouth, but instead let your words become beautiful gifts that encourage others; do this by speaking words of grace to help them. (Ephesians 4:29 TPT)

When I was a little kid, on occasion my dad would tell me, “Billie Barta, think before you speak!” Even though I never really listened to him, today I have come to know and understand exactly what he meant. Words are powerful! The things you say to and about others are really a reflection of yourself. When you speak to someone in love, this directly displays the love living inside of you; on the contrary, when you allow hateful or ugly talk to come from your mouth, you are putting forth a public display of what is on the inside of you. Listen, and take this to heart. It’s not what you swallow that pollutes your life, but what you vomit up. (Matthew 15:11 MSG)

God loved us so much He gave His Son to die in our place for our sins. Jesus was willing to leave the comfort, glory, joy and peace of heaven to come into a world filled with troubled, sick, hateful, suffering people. It was love that caused Him to endure the rejection, agony and torment of the cross.

Seeing Jesus’ love for us is vital. Choosing to love as He did will take us to the people He has assigned you to reach. God has no other plan. He works through us to fulfill His will in the earth. It all started in Genesis when God gave man dominion in the earth. He works through people who choose to do His will.

Remember, love is not a feeling. You may or may not have an emotional experience or feeling when you choose to love. The important issue is to decide to love because you were born again into the love nature of God. Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. (1 John 4:7)

You have the ability to love because love is in you. It is your choice. Will you choose to walk in love? Will you choose to align with heaven and walk in love? Forgiving, releasing offences, speaking blessings upon those who attack you or those you do not agree with? Will you choose to make love your primary focus.

All of us have a boiling point, a height of anger or rage in which we “lose it” and are careless with the things that are spoken out of our mouths! Our patience has been pushed to the brink of the cliff and we can’t bite our tongue any longer; we have tried to be kind but it just seems like different words must be used to address this person and resolve this conflict. I know this feeling well! BUT today is it important to understand Jesus had plenty of opportunities to “JUMP off the deep end,” but the way you talk to people and about people shows your maturity and ultimately your relationship with God!

Victorious by His Grace!
Billie

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