We all know that February is the month of love with Valentine’s Day arriving right in the middle of the month. Of course, this particular February has even more room to ‘love one another’ since it is a leap year with a ‘once every four year’ experience of February 29th! There is always room for more love!
When it comes to love, you can’t do any better than the little New Testament of I John. In five short sections we hear that:
God’s love is made complete in Jesus (1:5)
We should love one another (3:11)
That God is love and whoever loves lives in God (4:16)
That there is no fear in love but in fact perfect love drives out all fear (4:18)
To love God is to obey his commandments (5:3)
Those are not romantic images of love but they are essential to our life of faith and to our relationship with God. I am always amazed by the number of people who carry around an image of God that include a God who desires to punish, be harsh, and demanding. If we follow the path that is presented in I John, we will discover that we are blessed to know a God who loves us deeply. John even says, “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.”
That is the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! That God wants to shine through so our lives can be illuminated by Jesus who is the Light of the World. February 2016 would be a great time to discover or reaffirm that reality for our own faith journey.
I am so grateful to God for the wonderful things the Lord is doing within our congregation. I see people increasing their commitment to worship. I see people developing outstanding plans for serving others. I see faithful leaders who are helping us move the mission forward every day. I see people coming to faith and families growing in their faith. It is a beautiful sight!
I pray that February 2016 will be a time of great blessing to you and your family. On Wednesday February 10th we will commit our lives to the growing journey of Lent as we receive the mark of repentance on Ash Wednesday. From there we will learn how to Give It Up as the season of Lent leads us to Holy Week and ultimately to the gift of Easter resurrection celebrations.
God is love, and in him there is no darkness at all. In fact, at every turn God desires to brighten our day with gifts of grace. Let’s spend this month (and the rest of the year!) working in partnership with God! I know it will be a blessing!
May it be so in your life!