1 John 3:18 - The Completeness Of Christian Character.
1 John 3:18 (NIV) Dear children, let us not
love with words or speech but with actions and in
1 John 3:18 (NLT) Dear children, lets not
merely say that we love each other; let us show the
truth by our actions.
1 John 3:18 (GW) Dear children, we must show
love through actions that are sincere, not
through empty words.
1 John 3:18 (TEV) My children, our love
should not be just words and talk; it must be true
love, which shows itself in action.
A Constant Inner Impulse. The completeness
of Christian character is attained when the
impulse to help and bless others springs constantly
from within. It is the atmosphere of this love
surrounding the soul of the believer that makes him a
savor of life unto life and enables God to bless
his work. AA551 [Remnant SB]
The completeness of Christian character
is attained when the impulse to help and bless
others springs constantly from within. It is the
atmosphere of this love surrounding the soul of the
believer that makes him a savor of life unto life and
enables God to bless his work.
Supreme love for God and unselfish love
for one another - this is the best gift that our
heavenly Father can bestow. This love is not an
impulse, but a divine principle, a permanent power.
The unconsecrated heart cannot originate or
produce it. Only in the heart where Jesus reigns is
it found. We love Him, because He first
loved us. In the heart renewed by divine grace,
love is the ruling principle of action. It
modifies the character, governs the impulses,
controls the passions, and ennobles the affections.
This love, cherished in the soul, sweetens the
life and sheds a refining influence on all
The true test of Christian character is
actions, not words. That's true in any area of life;
what we do speaks louder than what we say. And
that's why the apostle John isn't content for God's
people to love only in words. Love shows itself in
actions: meeting people's needs, showing concern and
making sacrifices. One of the most significant
charges Jesus made against the religious leaders who
opposed him was that their lives didn't line up with
their words. They were hypocrites. God means for
us to be consistent - for our minds and hearts
and actions to line up with the truth we
profess. Our love for others is not only to be heard
but also to be seen. [NIV Once A Day Bible]
If You're Seeking Joy
Patty was the picture of unselfishness.
It's impossible to imagine how many kids she
hugged, diapers she changed, children she taught,
and hearts she encouraged.
Three months earlier a brain condition
had left her unable to speak, partially
paralyzed, and living in a rehabilitation center. Her
spirits sank so low she did not want to eat and had
trouble sleeping. One evening her daughter had an
idea. She placed her mother in a wheelchair and
rolled her from room to room, looking for people
who needed encouragement. It didn't take long.
Though unable to speak, Patty could touch
and pray. So she did both. She patted other
patients and then placed her hand on their hearts and
bowed her head. For the better part of the
evening, she touched and prayed her way through the
rehab center. That night her appetite returned,
and she slept peacefully.
The words of Jesus are spot-on: "It is
more blessed to give than to receive" (Acts 20:35
NKJV). Because when you do, it has a boomerang
effect. [You Can Count On God by Max Lucado]
One way to think about the recovery
process is to imagine what water does to a dry
sponge. We come into the process dried up and
thirsting for life. We've tried other things, but so
far nothing has helped. We have come to the
realization that no one but our Creator is going to be
able to provide what we so desperately need.
In the same way a dry sponge soaks up all
the water it is exposed to, the Celebrate
Recovery process allows us to soak up God's peace,
love, grace, and forgiveness. Oh, how good that
feels when our dry spirits soak up all that
life-giving water! Eventually, though, we reach our
saturation point. We can't hold any more until we allow
ourselves to be wrung out on those around us through
our service. Then we can soak up more. This is a
healthy process, because - as we all know - a
waterlogged sponge left on the counter for a few days
will begin to stink.
The old saying "You can't keep it unless
you give it away" is right. This is why service
is so important. If we come into the process,
soak up God's goodness, then fail to give back,
we'll soon be like that waterlogged sponge: we
become rancid and begin to smell. God's way is to
fill us, wring us out, and fill us again.
Holy Father, I love to feel your
life-giving Spirit flowing within me. Remind me to stay
fresh and healthy by sharing with others what
you've given to me. In Jesus' name, Amen.
[Celebrate Recovery Daily Devotional by John & Johnny
Character And Faith
My parents had a profound impact on me.
My mother's kind and gentle character and
concern for the spiritual welfare of others are
reaping fruit still today. I recall also with deep
gratitude my father's example of honesty, integrity,
discipline, and hard work.
Over the years countless others have
influenced me and changed me by the examples of their
lives - although I am sure they were unaware of
it. The same has probably been true of people in
The greatest legacy you can pass on is
the legacy of your character and your faith. If
our character is bad, marked by lack of
integrity or any other negative quality, this is how
we will be remembered. But if our character and
integrity have been shaped by Christ over the years,
others can't help but see this and remember it.
Why is faith our greatest legacy? Because
the memory of what we were like - not just our
personalities but our character and our faith - has the
potential to influence others for Christ. How do you
want to be remembered?
What kind of legacy are you leaving?
[Peace for Each Day by Billy Graham]
Love Is an Action
Love is more than attraction and more
than arousal. Its also more than
sentimentality, like so many pop songs suggest. By this
standard, is love dead when the emotion is gone? No,
not at all. Because love is an action; love is a
Over and over again in the Bible, God
commands us to love each other. And you cant
command an emotion. If I told you, Be sad! you
couldnt be sad on cue. Just like an actor, you can
fake it, but youre not wired for your emotions
to change on command. You know that truth if
youve ever told a little kid, Be happy!
Im trying, daddy!
If love were just an emotion, God
couldnt command it. But love is something you do.
Yes, it can produce emotion, but love is an
The Bible says, Let us stop just
saying we love each other; let us really show it by
our actions (1 John 3:18 NLT). We can talk a
good act: I love people. But do we really
love them? Do you really love them? Our love is
revealed in how we act toward them. [Daily Devotional
by Rick Warren:
Verses 17, 18 give an example of how to give
up our life for others - to help those in need.
This is strikingly similar to James's teaching
(James 2:14-17). How clearly do your actions say
you really love others? Are you as generous as
you should be with your money, possessions, and
time? [Life Application SB]
LINKS FOR FURTHER STUDY
James 2:17 - Faith and Works.
Acts 20:35 - It Is More Blessed To Give Than
LINKS WORTH CHECKING OUT