May 7, Sunday

The AMI QT Devotionals from May 1-6 are provided by Pastor Charles Choe of Tapestry Church, Los Angeles.  Charles, a graduate of UC Riverside and Fuller Theological Seminary (M.Div.), is married to Grace, and they have three children: Chloe, Noah, and Camden.

DEVOTIONAL THOUGHTS FOR TODAY

2 Corinthians 8:19-24

We take this course so that no one should blame us about this generous gift that is being administered by us, 21 for we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord’s sight but also in the sight of man.  

A young man wrote a love letter that included these words: “I would cross the widest ocean for you; swim the deepest river for you; scale the highest mountain for you; and crawl across the burning sands of the desert –nothing is too much for you!” Then he added this postscript: “If it doesn’t rain, I’ll be over to see you on Tuesday night.”

Sometimes this is the way we think about love. We think love is a feeling, that it is intensely emotional. But the kind of love the Bible speaks of is much more than a feeling—it’s an action; a reaction.  It’s to love when things are difficult; when we feel like doing the exact opposite out of self-preservation. It’s a love that is not determined by our feelings or by the situation.

In our passage today, Paul challenges the Corinthians to prove their love. Verse 21 reads, “for we aim at what is honorable not only in the Lord’s sight but also in the sight of man.” It’s one thing to honor God, but how about being honorable in the sight of God? It’s one thing to say we love God, but it’s another to show it by loving others. We are reminded by the apostle John, not the most loving person in his youth (Lk. 9:54) whom God had transformed, who writes, “Whoever does not love does not know God because God is love” (1 John 4:8). We are always ready to receive God’s love, the affirmation of His love in our daily circumstances, but how readily do we avail ourselves to loving others?

In other words, if we are genuine followers of Jesus Christ, there will be more than just talk. And giving is a concrete expression of love. If giving is to be truly out of love, it requires a degree of sacrifice. Giving sacrificially is a way to tangibly flesh out the emotions we actually feel; telling a hurting person that things will get better might be helpful, but it doesn’t cost anything for the giver. It’s when we give, to the point that it hurts, that we are much more like Jesus. It’s when we give that we demonstrate our trust in God.

How tangible is your love? Are you faithful in your giving for the cause of Christ? When is the last time you just blessed somebody because you simply loved them?

Prayer: God, help me to be loving in action, and not just in words. Help me to discover the joy of giving to others. May even my bank statements truly reflect my trust in You! In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Bible Reading for Today: Colossians 3-4

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