Summary: In this conversation we wrap up our discussion on getting better at loving ourselves.
Love What God Loves – You!
Okay – today is the 7th Sunday of the year 2017…
AND – week three of our series, ‘Getting Better At What Jesus Said Matters Most.’
AND – I want to start off with some powerful and familiar words penned by Paul and breathed by God, 2000 years ago about the importance and definition of His kind of love.
If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.
3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.
4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 8 Love never fails - 1 Cor 13:1
2000 years ago – during the final week before His crucifixion and death, Jesus was asked a question by a religious leader.
“Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
“The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’
The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.” – Mark 12:28-31
Matthew adds Jesus saying this…
All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.” - Matthew 22:36-40
What would happen?
What would your lives look like, if you actually ‘got better’ – at loving God, loving others and loving yourself…
I MEAN – would it make a difference in how you live?
Would it make a difference in your inner being?
Would people (your – spouse, kids, parents, family members, friends, neighbors, coworkers) notice?
Would your world feel it’s impact?
Would we finally begin walking in the newness and fullness of life that Jesus promised?
AND LISTEN – the point that I have been trying to drive home the last few weeks is this…
BEFORE – you will ever really get better at loving God (as you should) and loving your neighbors as God intends,
YOU FIRST – must love yourself.
AND MGCC – the truth is that, far too many don’t.
AND THE EVIDENCE…
#1 – self-hatred, depression, insecurity and low self-esteem are pretty much at epidemic levels. BOTH – inside and outside of the church.
#2 most people are not doing so good at loving God with ALL OF their (heart, soul, mind and strength) or at loving their neighbor as God intends.
NOW – I am calling this morning’s conversation, ‘Love What God Loves, You!” AND – in this conversation we will wrap up the middle, the often missing command of God for you to love yourself.
UNDERSTAND – there is so much we could talk about in regards to this subject… of Getting Better at loving yourself.
BUT – we need to move on to the first part of the Great Commandment… ‘Getting Better At Loving God.’
AND – we will kick that off next week by unpacking a conversation I am calling, ‘A God Worthy Of Our Love.”
BUT LISTEN – though we are moving on from this command to love yourself…
I want you to know…that the how you feel about yourself,
that your emotion health matters to me, so it will be a topic we will visit again.
BECAUSE – I have very recently become convinced that it is impossible to become spiritually mature if we are not emotionally healthy.
SO – let me recommend a few books… that you can read by yourself or with a friend that will help you in this journey to become the YOU God created you to be… To become you-ier.
I’ve read each one, and the all have valuable insights.
Emotionally Healthy Spirituality – Peter Scazerro
The Missing Commandment. Love Yourself – Jerry and Denise Basel
ME – John Ortberg
Waking The Dead – John Eldredge
OKAY - here is how I want to attack our conversation this morning. I want to talk about 7 keys or principals for getting better at loving yourself…
7 things that if you will do them, will enable to really love what God loves, and God loves you.