Through loving (#2 of 3)


You must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind (Luke 10:27; NLT).

Through loving God,
We learn to love our neighbours.

Through loving them,
We learn to welcome strangers.

Through loving them,
We learn to love

Even those
Who thirst for blood,

And, loving them,
We learn to love ourselves.

Love your neighbour as yourself (Luke 1027; NLT).

When they came to a place called The Skull, they nailed him to the cross. And the criminals were also crucified – one on his right and one on his left. Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.”
(Luke 23:33-4; NLT).

All are one in Christ

Didn’t one God create us?
Why then do we act treacherously against one another?
(Malachi 2:10; NIV).

There is neither Jew nor Gentile,
neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female…

1. There is neither Jew nor Gentile,
Male nor Female,
Slave nor Free.

2. There is neither Black nor White,
Kin nor Stranger,
You nor Me.

3. There is neither Saint nor Sinner,
LBGTQ,
Nor Straight.

4. There is neither East nor West,
Creed nor Dogma,
Church nor State.

5. There is neither Friend nor Foe
Nor Refugee,
Nor Us, nor Them

6. For All are one in Christ:
Our Mother, Father, Spirit, Soul.
Amen.

…for you are all one in Christ Jesus
(Galatians 3:28; NIV).

God shows no favouritism.
In every nation he accepts those who fear him
and do what is right (Acts 10:34-5; NLT). 

Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely
(1 Corinthians 13:12; NLT).


References 

2. Love your neighbour as yourself (James 2:8; NLT).

Love ye therefore the stranger (Deuteronomy 10:19; KJV).

3. He loves us with unfailing love (Psalm 117:2; NLT).

Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn others, or it will all come back against you. Forgive others, and you will be forgiven (Luke 6:37; NLT).

4. All the world from east to west will know there is no other God (Isaiah 45:6; NLT).

In that day the Root of Jesse will stand as a banner for the peoples; the nations will rally to him, and his resting place will be glorious (Isaiah 11:10; NIV). 

5. Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you (Luke 6:27-8; NIV).

You, too, must show love to foreigners (Deuteronomy 10:19; NLT).

Let my refugees stay with you (Isaiah 16:4; CSB). 

6. I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd (John 10:16; NIV).

The Almighty …blesses you with blessings of the skies above, blessings of the deep springs below, blessings of the breast and the womb (Genesis 49:25; NIV).

You, Lord, are our Father (Isaiah 63:16; CSB).

As truly as God is our Father, so truly is God our Mother (Revelations of Divine Love, Chapter 59, Julian of Norwich).

Your immortal spirit is in every one of them (Wisdom of Solomon 12:1; GNTA).

The Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul (Genesis 2:7; KJV). 

Let all the people say, “Amen” (Psalm 106:48; NLT). 

Turn to God

Each of you must repent and turn to God, and be baptised in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. Then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:38; NLT).

Turn to God,
And start afresh:
Repent of all your sin.
Accept forgiveness,
Bless your foes,
And welcome Christ within.

Turn to God,
And start again:
Be Spirit-filled, and pray.
Take up your cross,
Put others first,
And follow Christ each day.

Turn to God,
And start anew:
Accepting all he sends.
Through good and bad
Love everyone,
Until your journey ends.

The only thing that counts is faith expressing itself through love (Galatians 5:6; NIV).


World-wide justice

Don’t use your freedom as an excuse to do evil.
(1 Peter 2:16; NLT). 

Let true justice prevail (Deuteronomy 16:20; NLT). 

1. We pray for world-wide justice, Lord:
For shame about the lies we’ve spun;
For confession, and contrition
As we weep for what we’ve done.

2. We pray for widespread mercy, Lord:
For sorrow that we’ve used brute force;
For repentance, and forgiveness
As we face our deep remorse.

3. We pray for global fairness, Lord:
For readiness to love our foe;
For penance, and for reparation
As we pay back all we owe.

4. We pray for perfect wisdom, Lord:
For faith and hope; an end to war;
For reconciliation, truth
And peace on earth, for evermore.

The Lord will mediate between nations and will settle international disputes. They will hammer their swords into ploughshares and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will no longer fight against nation, nor train for war any more (Isaiah 2:4; NLT).  

You have shattered the yoke that burdens them, the bar across their shoulders, the rod of their oppressor. Every warrior’s boot used in battle and every garment rolled in blood will be destined for burning, will be fuel for the fire. For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the greatness of his government and peace there will be no end (Isaiah 9:4-7; NIV).


The song of the dead

No longer will you need the sun to shine by day,
nor the moon to give its light by night,
for the Lord your God will be your everlasting light.
(Isaiah 60:19; NLT).

The dust returns to the ground it came from,
and the spirit returns to God who gave it.
(Ecclesiastes 12:7; NIV).

Father, brighter than the sun;
Jesus, every battle won;
Spirit, all your work is done:
We love you.

Lord, we walked the path you trod;
You, our guide, with staff and rod,
Leading us straight back to God:
We love you. 

Every enemy outrun;
Here, no hatred, fear, or gun;
All will live in union:
We love you. 

Father, we have run our race;
Jesus, we can see your face;
Spirit, overwhelming grace:
We love you. 

Lord, in paradise, at last,
Every pain and grief is past;
You have saved us, held us fast:
We love you. 

Now, our joy, Lord, has begun;
Now, we hear you say: Well done!
Now, we know you, Three-In-One:
And love you.

🖤

Yours, O Lord, is the greatness, the power, the glory, the victory, and the majesty. Everything in the heavens and on earth is yours, O Lord, and this is your kingdom. We adore you as the one who is over all things.
(1 Chronicles 29:11; NLT).

He will wipe away every tear from their eyes,
and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain.
(Revelation 21:4; NLT). 

For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.
(1 Corinthians 13:12; NIV).

 


If you remember me…

Remember the Lord your God.
(Deuteronomy 8:18; NLT).


1. If you remember me,
Do as I bid:
Loving your neighbours,
Just as I did.

2. If you believe in me,
Strive to do good:
Loving each stranger,
Just as I would.

3. If you depend on me,
Help others, too:
Loving each foreigner,
Just as I do.

4. No matter what happens,
Hold fast to me, still:
Loving your enemies –
Just as I will.

🖤

I will show my love to the one I called ‘Not my loved one.’
I will say to those called ‘Not my people,’ ‘You are my people’;
and they will say, ‘You are my God.’
(Hosea 2:23; NIV). 

 


References 

1. Love your neighbour as yourself (Mark 12:31; NLT).

2. Love the stranger (Deuteronomy 10:19; NKJV).

3. Show love to foreigners (Deuteronomy 10:19; NLT).

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:40; NIV).

4. Hold fast to the Lord your God (Joshua 23:8; NIV).

Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you (Luke 6:27-8; NIV).

 


 

Love, say sorry, forgive

Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them.
(Romans 12:9; NLT; my emphasis).

1. Love your family and friends,
Neighbours, strangers, too;
Foreigners, and enemies –
Serve all of them, bar none.

2. Say sorry to your family and friends,
Your neighbours, too;
Strangers, foreigners and foes
For every wrong you’ve done.

3. Forgive your family and friends,
Neighbours, strangers, too;
Foreigners, and enemies –
Then you’ll be like God’s Son.

🖤

As we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the day of judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world (1 John 4:17; NLT).


References

1. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love (1 John 4:8; NIV).

2. If you are presenting a sacrifice at the altar in the Temple and you suddenly remember that someone has something against you, leave your sacrifice there at the altar. Go and be reconciled to that person. Then come and offer your sacrifice to God (Matthew 5:23-4; NLT). 

3. If you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins (Matthew 6:14-15; NIV).

When they came to a place called The Skull, they nailed him to the cross. And … Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34; NLT).


 

I want to hug you

If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.
(Jeremiah 29:13; NLT).

1. I want to hug you, Father,
But I can’t;
Yet when I hug a friend, Lord,
I hug you.

2. I yearn to kiss you, Mary,
But I can’t;
Yet when I kiss my neighbour,
I kiss you.

3. I long to hold you, Jesus,
But I can’t;
Yet when I hold a stranger,
I hold you.

4. I seek you, Threefold God,
With all my heart;
And when I love my foe, Lord,
I find you.

🖤

Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me (Matthew 25:40; NIV).

 


References 

1. No one has greater love than this: to lay down his life for his friends (John 15:13; CSB).

2. Love your neighbour as yourself (Mark 12:31; NLT).

3. Love the stranger (Deuteronomy 10:19; NKJV

4. You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water (Psalm 63:1; NIV).

Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you (Luke 6:27-8; NIV).


 

Pray

Never stop praying, especially for others.
(Ephesians 6:18; CEV).

I urge you, first of all, to pray for all people. Ask God to help them; intercede on their behalf, and give thanks for them (1 Timothy 2:1; NLT). 

Pray for those you read about,
And everyone you see;
For those you only hear about,
And people on TV.

Pray for those you pass each day,
And everyone you greet;
For those who stop to chat with you,
And all who never speak.

Pray for those you’re glad to know,
And all you’d rather shun;
For those who want to put you down:
Yes, pray for everyone.

Pray for all your family;
For those you trust as friends;
And pray for all your enemies
Until your life here ends.

Ask the Lord to bless each one
With faith, hope, love, and health;
Then, when you’ve prayed for all the world,
Pray, lastly, for yourself.

🧡

Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last,
and the servant of all (Mark 9:35; NIV).


I delight

Image: PublicDomainPictures; words: NIV.


🧡

1. I delight
In your forgiveness,
And rejoice
In your great love.

2. I exalt
In your salvation,
Lord, my God,
In heaven above.

3. I submit
To every test,
And undertake
To bless each foe.

4. I commit
To follow you,
My Lord, my God,
On earth, below.

🧡


References

1. Take delight in the Lord (Psalm 37:4; NLT).

He forgives all my sins (Psalm 103:3; NLT).

Rejoice, you who worship the Lord (1 Chronicles 16:10; NLT).

He loves us with unfailing love (Psalm 117:2; NLT).

2. Exalt in his holy name (1 Chronicles 16:10; NLT).

I will reward them with a long life and give them salvation (Psalm 91:16; NLT).

I am overwhelmed with joy in the Lord my God! (Isaiah 61:10; NLT).

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name (Matthew 6:9; RSV). 

3. The Lord your God is testing you to see if you truly love him with all your heart and soul (Deuteronomy 13:3; NLT).

Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you (Luke 6:27-8; NIV).

4. Then he said to the crowd, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross daily, and follow me” (Luke 9:23; NLT).

“My Lord and my God!” Thomas exclaimed (John 20:28; NLT).

There is no God like you in all of heaven above or on the earth below (1 Kings 8:23; NLT).