Monday, June 24, 2013

Love and Be Loved

Hi my name is Konnie Allee. I am a wife to an amazingly kind and gentle man.  I fell in love with him I think the moment I first saw him pat the hand of an elderly woman.  Together we have seven wonderful children that I can say I truly not only love (of course) but like as well.  We also have some pretty incredible grandchildren, ten, including our Ghana baby, my daughter and her husband are in process of adopting.

Loves richest lessons have often come to me through the most adverse of times.  Divorce, drug addiction, financial struggles, a complicated blended family, care for sick, elderly parents, illness; all these hardships were difficult at the time but the end fruit was a closer walk with my Father, a sense of family with my faith community and a renewed appreciation for life.  For that I am intensely grateful. I am learning to stop trying to avoid the unpleasantness of a messy life, instead embrace it all as a gift, by which God’s love shines.

To Love and Be Loved

. . . She paused and then added honestly and almost tremblingly, “I see the longing to be loved and admired growing in my heart, Shepherd, but I don’t think I see the kind of Love that you are talking about, at least, nothing like the love which I see in You.” (Much Afraid is the main character in the book Hinds Feet on High Places)

Quite precisely Much Afraid has spoken; the kind of love the Good Shepherd is speaking of is a higher love. He speaks of a love that does not seek after self.  We all tend to be like Much Afraid, and our desire to be loved far exceeds our desire to love. 

After all, to love can be a very vulnerable position.  To love gives someone else the power to hurt you. Most of us resist pain of any kind and at all costs.  Often we go into self-defense mode, selecting the depth we will allow our love to go. We may withhold it from those we have determined are undeserving. Perhaps we have become hardened to love all together, either the giving or receiving.

Yet we have a Master who has commanded us to “love one another just as He loves” (John 13:34-35). It seems an impossible task. This is truly a high calling. How can we possibly fulfill His command? That is what I hope to discover as we search through scripture together in what it means to be a woman who chooses to love and be loved.

We can not attempt to be pleasing to our Father without first seeking His direction so please pray with me:
Dear Father, because You are the place that love originates, we come to You to be taught.  Your command to love the way You love seems impossible, but yet we know You understand our hearts better than we do, so we ask You, by Your Spirit, to do the work in us. Search us O God, refine us into to image of Your Son. We acknowledge our weakness, our doubts, our complete dependence on You, please, now open Your Word to us. Help us to lay aside every preconceived notion as we approach the topic of love. Our only desire is to love You better, to love others better and receive love better.  We ask that Your Spirit direct us into truth.  Be glorified in Your Son’s name, Jesus. Amen

Love and Be Loved
How could an All Knowing, All Powerful, All Present God possibly call on us to fulfill His mission here on planet earth?  Knowing us the way He does, how can we possibly be His plan? 

Let’s look at John 3:16-17, I know we all know it by heart but please look it up, look at the words on the page.

If you could, how would you paraphrase (put into your own words) this passage?
What is the heart of God towards people?
What is His desire for the lost?

What is your desire for the lost?

Let’s look up John 13:34-35
 So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other.  Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” NLT

What will prove to the world that we are His disciples?

What do we do if we just don’t feel “loving”?

Let us remember, “Love is not a feeling. It’s a decision. ”
Love is a DOING word. It requires choices. Hard choices, sometimes. It’s about sacrifice. It’s about faithfulness. It requires commitment. It sometimes hurts and doesn’t feel so good.

 If our hearts break over the lost we must adopted this attitude of love. True Love.
 A true disciple of Christ has no excuse for not loving.

Let’s look at Romans 5:5
Now hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out in our hearts by the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

What has God poured into your heart?
Do you believe it?

I like to look at God’s Word for just what it says; this tells me that God has already poured His love into us. This word “poured” is one that Greeks would have understood in this way; gush out, run greedily, overflowing.  It has this idea of unmeasured. The Greek language gives a much fuller meaning. Love without measure!  WOW! Think of that! The Originator of love itself has poured His brand of love into you and me without measure. 

How do you feel about the fact that God’s kind of love is poured out, to the point of overflowing, into you?
Do you think that He has given you all this love so you can feel good and happy?
While a sense of peace and joy may be part of the outcome of His love, I believe the purpose is far holier than that. 
What do you think He wants you to do with this great love?
Are you willing?

Turn to Ephesians 2:4-8
But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ and raised us up together, and made us sit together in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, that in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God

What strikes the cords of your heart in this passage?
Do you recall when you were not saved?
What was it like the moment you believed?

To me this scripture speaks of how God sees the lost through His tender mercy.  As I read this passage tears of sweet, sweet gratitude run down my cheeks. I am overwhelmed with the awareness of how lost I once was.  I like to keeps this thought in the forefront of my thoughts because it keeps me from judging people.  It tenders my heart toward the lost. Most importantly it reminds me of the destiny of the lost and the destiny of the saved.  Because of God’s love I am compelled to share what God has done in my life

At the core of LOVE is God, and God’s love for people. I pray you will pray and ask God to develop within you a heart like His- to truly understand what it is to Love and Be Loved.

I John 4:19-20
 We love Him because He first loved us. If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?


  1. I am still learning day-by-day how great a love my Heavenly Father has for me. There are times when His love makes me just cry with gratitude for a love so unconditional, so faithful, so persistent in it's pursuit of me, in spite of me :)

  2. Thank you for sharing this Konnie. I have gained a new perspective and am grateful for your teachings my dear friend. :)

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