Right Under Your Nose.

Search

Have you ever been looking for something and it was right there in front of you?  Whether it is the Ketchup bottle in the fridge, the invoice on the top of the pile or solution to a simple question. Often these things are “right under our nose” and for some reason we cannot see it, most often what we are looking for is in a place it can be clearly seen. This is an interesting phenomenon and I am sure it happens to most of us.

There is a message in the book of 1 John that should jump right off the page and hit us in the nose. This is a message that is so important and relevant to our lives that we may at times not see it. John writes, “I am writing to you, dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name.” (That is the name of Jesus Christ). In other words, on account of his love for us, we have been saved from the consequences of sin and death. Twice John explains this in his writing, “This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us.” (3:16). “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world so that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” (4:9-10).

God’s love for us is revealed throughout scripture and it is important to understand that He calls us into a relationship of love and obedience. “We love because he first loved us” (4:19). “This is love for God: to keep his commands.” (5:3). When we focus on these verses it seems so simple, but life in this world has a way of clouding the purity and goodness of God’s love for us. One of the difficult things we live with are the temptations and desires of this world, John reminds us that “The world and its desires pass away, but whoever does the will of God lives forever.” (2:17) God’s love is everlasting, this might be hard for us to comprehend when we go through the trials and temptations of life, and it is easy to say when life is going well. God gives us his word so that we can be reminded of his love, it is a word of truth and we must always remember like John says “God is Love.” (4:16) The answers to life, to knowing and understanding God’s love for us and the love we are to have for one another are right under our nose, in His word.

Walking in the Light

“This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” (1 John 1:5)

“When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” (John 8:12)

When I think of light in the physical sense of seeing an image or a display of light one that continues to amaze me and often stops me for a moment is God’s creative display of light in the colors of the rainbow. Not only is this a reminder of God’s promise to never flood the entire world but I see it as a reminder of who He is, the light in the darkness after a storm.

When we walk in the light, when our lives are focused on God and know that we will fall into the darkness because of sin we can always find forgiveness from God for our shortcomings. When we are honest with ourselves and honest with God (confessing our sins) He is faithful to forgive us. Our sinful nature will continue to pull us towards the darkness as long as we are walking on this earth. Even as we are truly walking in the light we will always need forgiveness and I am thankful that through Christ dying on the cross those sins are covered.

When we walk in the light, when we can see through the darkness our lives will be filled with His love. This love becomes a light in our lives and can shine so others can see and know the love God has for us.

Steve.

Love

46 times in 26 out of 105 verses you can find the word love in the book of 1 John, this is the first thing that struck me today as I read through this book. Obviously the author (whom we presume is the apostle John) had a point to make about love. Not to downplay the other themes of walking in the light and understanding and believing that Jesus is the Christ this subject of love is what jumps out at me today.

My favorite verse in this book is 4:18 particularly the first half that reads, “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear.” God’s love for us is incredible, when we know and believe that God showed us His love by sending His one and only Son into the world to be an atoning sacrifice for our sins we can’t help but share that love with others.

Here we have John pouring out his heart for the people to remember the foundations of their faith, believing in the basic understanding of how God loves us, how God is the light in this dark world, a reminder that through Jesus our sins have been forgiven. John reminds us that when we experience and know God’s love we will be prepared to face the challenges and actions of the world that face us each day.

As we grow into leadership and relationship with others it is this love that John talks about that needs to shine through us.