A Life Lived in Love

This weekend we’ll begin the fourth section of He Loves Me, where I wrote about what it means to live loved. It’s one thing to believe God loves me with our head, and another to grow in that love as the defining reality of our lives. Knowing we’re loved as a belief will only take us so far; it’s living in that love that opens up a lifelong adventure that will hold you through any storm, give you direction in every circumstance, and tenderizes your heart from the inside so you can love others without having to try.

How has it changed me? This is how I expressed it in Chapter 17 twenty-five years ago; I can assure you it has only grown wider and deeper from there:

As you grow increasingly certain that his love for you is not connected to your performance you will find yourself released from the horrible burden of doing something for him. You’ll realize that your greatest ideas and most passionate deeds will fall far short of what he really wants to do through you.

I used to be driven to do something great for God. I volunteered for numerous opportunities and worked hard in the hopes that some book I was writing, some church I was planting, or some organization I was helping would accomplish great things for God. While I think God used my misguided zeal in spite of myself, nothing I did ever rose to the level of my expectations. Instead they seemed to distract me from God, consume my life, and leave me stressed out or worn out from the pursuit.

I’m not driven anymore. I haven’t tried to do anything great for God in more than a decade, and yet I have seen him use my life in ways that always exceed my expectations. What changed? I did, by his grace.

My desire to do something great for God served me far more than it ever did him. It kept me too busy to enjoy him and distracted me from the real ministry opportunities he brought across my path every day.

I used to start my day laying out my plans before God and seeking his blessing on them. How silly! Why would I even want God to be the servant of my agenda? God’s plans for my day far exceed mine. I can almost hear him now as I awaken, “Wayne, I’m going to touch some people today. Do you want to come along?”

It’s amazing how gentle that is; but all the more powerful because it is. I don’t have to go. God’s work won’t be thwarted by my lack of participation. He will touch them anyway, but I wouldn’t miss it for the world. He does things I’ve never dreamed of and uses me in ways I could never conceive. His focus on touching people instead of managing programs has revolutionized my view of ministry. It requires no less diligence on my part, but directs that diligence in far more fruitful endeavors.

If you’ve never known the joy of simply living in God’s acceptance instead of trying to earn it, your most exciting days in Christ are ahead of you. People who learn to live out of a genuine love relationship with the God of the universe will live in more power, more joy, and more righteousness than anyone motivated by fear of his judgment.

We’ll continue our conversations about He Loves Me this Saturday, March 2 at 1:00 pm Pacific Standard Time.  We will be focusing on chapters 16 and 18—how the death of Christ gives us a basis for growing trust in the Father’s care and how we find freedom from religious performance so we can be transformed by love. Even if you have not joined us before, you’re welcome to join us tomorrow and process how you can live more freely in love as well.

If you want to join us in this Zoom conversation, you can get details and the link by liking the Facebook Group Page, or if you are not a member of Facebook, you can write me for a link to be sent each time we meet. For those who just want to watch, we stream them live now on my Lifestream Ministry Page, since a new glitch in Zoom is not allowing us to post them to my Facebook Author Page. I will, however, post it to the Author page once the conversation has ended. You can see it there as well as all the previous discussions we’ve had about He Loves Me.

My greatest passion for anyone who reads these blogs or anyone I’m in a conversation with is that they, too, would come to experience the joy and freedom of resting in the Father’s affection through the work of Jesus. There’s nothing else in this world worth more than that.


4 thoughts on “A Life Lived in Love”

  1. “Knowing we’re loved as a belief will only take us so far; it’s living in that love that opens up a lifelong adventure that will hold you through any storm, give you direction in every circumstance, and tenderizes your heart from the inside so you can love others without having to try.”

    100%. While I was a religious person\teacher who sold the idea that I was not in religion but in a “relationship”, I had no idea then how far away I was from living by spirit. I lived by “good doctrine/theology”, attempted good morality, good communication, and good habits. I taught and encouraged people to memorize scripture; 1 Cor 13 memorized should bring about good “love habits” should it not? It did! I was a wonderful poser, and had everyone convinced I was legit…but for that “something” inside that had no peace by being morally superior. I now realize what the enemy is to spirit, and living by love. It is all those things that I listed above. I hate to say it, but the truth about living with a heart of love/worship truly is found when the music fades, theology/doctrine, morality, positive thinking, good habits, are stripped away, or ripped away; when the agenda is gone, the plan-gone, good ideas-gone, and we are stripped bare-right down to our ugly insecure reality. This is where we finally see the necessary contrast, the lines and truth no longer blurred, the layers of hurts and habits and reaction pried away one layer at a time. This is the ugly wonderful place where the spirit introduces us to love and freedom which are beautifully and naturally linked. It’s not cute, it’s not even a little bit pretty, it’s real, and this is where Spirit raises us from the ashes into the new creatures we have read is possible.
    Now with no agenda, I know anything is possible, I ask for nothing, and yet in my perfect imperfection, I now know I have everything.

    1. Kevin, great to see you here again. You bring back such great days we shared together near Edmonton some years ago. And these words, are precious. I am so grateful you posted them here. And more than words, they are only powerful because they represent a noble journey that God is inviting all his children to embrace, away from the false arrogance of legalism and performance, to the tender humility of how his love shapes us. We truly end up with nothing to boast about; we can only smile in gratitude at the amazing God who loves us enough to change us. I was honored and deeply touched to read your words today.

      1. My spirit was lifted when I read your response, you will always be an important person to myself and to my family. We really did love that time we got to spend together with you here, and I laugh to myself as I remember your positivity and graciousness to my confident hopes and dreams of what could be done within the institution, while I believe, you knew full well what the likely outcome would be.

        I haven’t had too much to say these past few years, the things I was experiencing left me lost for words. I tried to write but I couldn’t do justice with words, what I was knowing in heart and spirit. All I could say is, “it is like…, but that isn’t even it, it is better, God is better, way better than what we’ve been told. (lol, doesn’t make for a great 5 pointer!) How refreshing to be able to meet love before we are love, and to be changed by the presence of love, and a life of responding in moments in the freedom of spirit/love, and not by obligation. Powerful. I have learned there is nothing like not being physically rewarded or even noticed when operating in tough circumstances, when hand in hand in sprit. Perfect peace, beautifully humbling, confidence in spirit-inspiring. And again the words do not do this reality, justice.

        Years ago I had an encounter with a song in the middle of the night, it goes: “I want to be small, just like a child…”, it struck me like none other, but I did not know why. My spirit did, now I do too.
        Love you bro, thank you for your words throughout the years, and thank you for your friendship.

        1. You’re welcome, Kevin. This sounds like such an amazing journey and the fruit it bears without having to try to act peaceful, loving, humble, or inspired. It’s all an incredible gift for a willing heart. I know you’ve been through some tough things and paid an incredible price to follow your conscience and not build a kingdom of your own making. You are a gift and you have a way of expressing your journey that is beautiful and infectious. Yes, words don’t do it justice, but your words reflect his glory and that is powerful stuff. May the way grow clearer, your strength deeper, and your love more vulnerable every day. Blessings to you and your family!

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