The Measure of Maturity

By Francis Frangipane

It has been my experience that too many of us, as Christians, have been confused about love.  We have assumed that attaining the look of love was the same reality as actually being transformed into a loving person.  I"m not saying that we have consciously planned on being shallow or noncommittal, but that somehow we have settled on the cosmetic instead of the real. 

We have developed an "altar" ego, a look for church that lasts, at best, just a few minutes longer than the church service itself.  All we have really accomplished is to perfect the art of acting like Christians. 

I think we have yet to learn to consistently walk according to the standards of Christ's love.  I hear how quick some are to speak about the flaws of those they supposedly love, and I wonder, what kind of love demeans an individual behind their back?  When I witness unloving words from a Christian's mouth, I am reminded that we have much to learn about Jesus and what it means to follow Him.

We Love Because He First Loved Us

By Francis Frangipane

Do you love Jesus Christ?  Is there a part of your heart that not only intellectually accepts Christ's death for you, but actually loves Him for the price He paid? 

Do you love His word and appreciate the many times He's rescued you from difficulties and battles, many caused by your own sin or foolishness?  Do you love how He accepts you unconditionally when you turn to Him? He has forgiven every sin you have ever committed.  How can you not love Him? 

For too many people, knowing Jesus goes no deeper than agreeing to the historical fact of His existence. However, loving Him is a distant, almost unnatural reality for them. They take His name in vain or anger and, incredibly, use it as a curse. However, when you say the name of Jesus, its very sound calms the troubling in your heart.  They mock His righteousness and delight in lawlessness.  Yet, you love righteousness, even if you fall short of your own spiritual aspirations.