[Notes from Junior High Camp with guest speaker Brian Porzio]
We all have to reach a point in our lives of great reflection and thought on where we are. It is of self-reflection that we realize what God could be trying to speak to us. Are we listening? In Revelation 2:1-7, John wrote to a church in Ephesus. In this section of the letter, John was basically saying that God holds the stars and world and sees everything. It was like they were doing church right…with one exception. After listing all the great things of their church, John wrote, “But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first”. The church of Ephesus forgot why they were doing ministry, why they were serving, and ultimately their entire purpose. They had become so consumed with other things in their lives, that they forgot the very thing that started it all. Jesus was no longer considered their “first love”.
A first love can and often will consume the individuals involved. It can become obsession. It can be beautiful. Above all, it is exciting, powerful, enthralling, and moving. When you really love someone, everything else falls into place. Ephesus has lost their love for God. Now we, modern day people, whether you believe in Christ or not, have to go back to Genesis, and see the beauty and purpose of God’s creation. God’s fingerprints are on creation…we are made in his very image!
Inside us there is a longing for God…it is what we were designed for. It is who we are. If we are made in God’s very likeness- his image- we have to understand how deeply he loves us. God’s love makes everything else not matter. When we have intimacy with someone else it means you know them deeply. Unlike the world’s opinion of intimacy, very little of it has to do with sex. Instead, it is about loving God and taking the time to get to know him. God wants to share his dreams, desires, and ultimately his heart with you. His dreams are pure. He is the epitome of love. God also wants to know your heart and for you to be open and honest with him.
So here is the question…have you taken time to get to know God, hear his heart, but also share yours? God is seeking for you to captivated in a love so deep and pure. Have you wasted your affections, attention, love, and even desires on things that don’t matter rather than serve and love God wholly? I know I struggle with serving my idols instead of serving God who offers a journey of discovering him. Here is the challenge: find that place, that “grassy knoll” that you can encounter God and learn his heart and ultimately fall deeply in love with him. Your “grassy knoll” needs to be a place where you can meet with God in solitude, in worship, and in love. He wants you to discover him and walk with him as a first love…
…when you fall in love, you just stop looking.
I know I have stopped looking and fall more in love with God everyday. What about you?