Archive for February, 2013

Fuel for the Fire, #57: FILL ‘ER UP!

Monday, February 4th, 2013

Yes, things leak sometimes…  As a young man of 19, I purchased a 1972 Datsun 510 Wagon (red, 4-speed) that leaked gasoline – I mean LOTS of gasoline – if you filled the gas tank over ½ full.  It made cross-country road trips pretty challenging. 

“WHY?” you may astutely inquire, “WHY would a sane person purchase a car that leaked petrol like a sieve?”  Well, I didn’t know it leaked – because the previous owner shrewdly had the tank at ½ full when he sold me the car.  And if you never filled it above halfway, everything seemed normal.  But the ½ tank problem certainly hindered the intended usefulness and enjoyment of the vehicle. 

Eventually, I totaled the car ~ got T-boned by a Chevy Blazer, and wound up flipping it end-over-end.  Yikes!  I was shaken up pretty good, but I was OK (God spared my life).  And I must say it was a fitting end for the leaky little $550.00 Datsun.  Thank God nobody struck a match at the accident scene! 

WE LEAK LOVE

My Datsun leaked gasoline… But I leak love.  And so do you.  We don’t mean to ~ in fact, we intend just the opposite.  We remember meeting Jesus when we were younger… Learning His ways and Word… Loving to go to church or home group, and just hanging out with others who followed Jesus too… And we thought it would be like that forever. 

But guess what?  WE LEAK LOVE.  The rigors of life, the attacks of the enemy, the fickleness of friends, and even (or especially) the trials some experience in ministry itself will put holes in our love reservoir. 

Like the Datsun, we can’t always see where we’re leaking – and we often learn to live with “1/2 a tank” of what God intended, coping our way through life rather than enjoying our friendship with God (and with others) the way He intended. 

Our tank hath holes, and therefore we need to REFILL our hearts and lives with the love of Jesus regularly ~ or else we’ll end up like my Datsun when it strayed too far from the Texaco station.  So how do we do it? 

GROW HOT, OR GROW COLD

Jesus gave us this forewarning about the days in which we live:

“Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold…”

Matthew 24:12 NIV

Sadly, the floodwaters of wickedness are rising in America… Wrong is called right, murdering the unborn is called choice, destructive sexual strongholds are celebrated and called normal, and those who dare to say that they believe what God’s Word says about sin and eternity are called haters, intolerant, and “absolutists.” 

Satan is on the move ~ he wants to steal the soul of this next generation, and to beat the Church into silence and submission to his agenda so we won’t be a threat to his kingdom.

We enter the day when the love of many (or most) will grow cold.  And the only surefire way to not grow cold is to grow HOT – to tend the flame of our love for Jesus, and then to stoke the fire with:

  • More time enjoying God’s presence (Ps. 16:11),
  • Sitting at His feet in worship (Luke 10:39),
  • Meditating on His Word (Psalm 1:2),
  • Listening for His voice (John 10:27), and
  • Pouring out our hearts before Him (Ps. 62:8) in prayer

Yes, it requires an investment of time and energy ~ but so does watching the Super Bowl!  Let’s face it: if something is important to us, we make time for it.  And investing time in your friendship with Jesus guarantees your heart will never grow cold toward Him.  It is, beyond a shadow of a doubt, the wisest investment you or I will ever make.      

This also means being in fellowship (think friendship) with others who love Jesus… I don’t just mean warming a pew on Sunday morn, then racing off to the rest of your week.  Rather, I mean building real friendships with brothers and sisters in Jesus.  This may or may not take place on Sunday morn, or even in a church building.  But as you build these friendships, you build God’s Church (for we are His Church), you build up your friends, and you build up your faith. 

I pray that your week is filled with the peace, power, and presence of the Lord… Remember His promises to you and me:

“You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart.”

Jeremiah 29:13  NIV 

Draw close to God, and God will draw close to you.

James 4:8 NLT 

“If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.”

John 14:23  NKJV

 

In His unfailing love,

Pastor Matthew Casey

© Springs of Life Ministries, 2013