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Inspirational Articles by Lygia Lovelace

 

 

Amazing Love Community Church

 

 

"Mama, when I get to heaven, I'm gonna run and run and run and never stop! And my feet and legs and knees won't hurt. I'll just run down those streets of gold…"

 

Jonah told me this just last week when church was over. I understood his meaning. Because of his disease, Jonah's legs, knees, ankles, and feet hurt so badly that he often stays in his wheelchair. He gets so tired of the pain and swelling. Truly it's heartbreaking.

 

Our children's Bible study on that Sunday morning was about heaven. The children listened carefully. First of all, we talked about what WOULDN'T be there…

 

…no pain, no suffering, no darkness, no sin, no churches, no lamps or candles or flashlights, no death, no fear…

 

Then, we talked about what WOULD be in heaven…

 

…joy, love, perfect peace, streets of gold, the tree of life, the light of God, angels, praise, God Himself and His Son, the Lord Jesus…

 

Are you a believer? Have you given your life to Jesus? Do you know that He is the only Way? The world will tell you differently. False religions will tell you differently. Satan, the enemy, wants to deceive you into thinking it's not true. But Jesus is the only way.

 

Thomas said to Him, "Lord, we don't know where You are going, so how can we know the way?"
Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life.
No one comes to the Father except through Me.
John 14:5-6

 

If you struggle with believing this, ask God to show you the truth. He will! I'm speaking from experience. In college I went through a deep crisis of belief…wondering if God's Word was true…if God was really real.

 

"Just ask Him to show you what's true…what have you got to lose?" a college friend suggested.

 

So I did. God didn't reveal Himself to me overnight, but as I persevered in prayer and continued to seek Him -- reading His Word, going to church, listening to the testimonies of other believers -- He confirmed in my heart so clearly that His Word is true and that indeed, Jesus is the only way. I never doubt His existence now. It was an experience I will not forget.

 

If you struggle with doubt or disbelief, seek Him. Ask Him to show you what's true. What have you got to lose?

 

If Jesus IS ALREADY your Lord and Savior, then you know you are going to heaven someday. What a blessing to have heaven to look forward to! I could see the longing on Jonah's face as I taught the Bible lesson on that Sunday morning. And in those moments as I looked around the table at the children of our church, I thanked God for the little "pieces of heaven" that He has given us on earth. We have so much to be thankful for!

 

I am so thankful for our new baby church. Six months ago, we didn't even know that we would be helping to birth a new church! Isn't God amazing? Just when you think all is lost, He has a plan.

 

"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord,
"plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

 

Many of you know that Ken, under extreme and ungodly pressure, resigned as pastor of a traditional church here in St. Louis, just a few months ago. It was an awful experience. Our family was so different, even from the start, and the bond that forms among a true family of believers was never there. What happened at this church was tragic. Thankfully, we felt like God protected us and removed us.

 

Yet in the midst of so many trials and tribulations, God still brought amazing people into our lives. These people have stuck with us in hard times, prayed for us, cried with us, been patient with us, encouraged us, and most importantly?

 

They have loved us.

 

The Father, in His awesome plan, has been carefully molding and shaping our little family of believers together and this past week, as we have begun to form an official congregation, God has given us a name.

 

Amazing Love Community Church

 

Why did God impress this name upon our hearts?

 

Because of the love.

 

"From the moment I walked in here, I have felt loved," said one visitor.

 

"It doesn't seem to matter to anyone here about my past," said another, "I just feel loved and accepted."

 

What a joy to be with a group of people who are so accepting and loving of others! We are all different -- a diverse community of believers -- but we have a common bond, the bond of love…the bond of Jesus. We are a true family -- all colors, all ages, from different backgrounds and different struggles. We just belong together. It is what Jesus intended for His bride…the church.

 

It is a little bit of heaven on earth.

 

Not too long ago, I spoke at a church on the other side of St. Louis. The church building was in a large neighborhood. The parking lot was big, but mostly empty. All of the people there were elderly. When I walked in, they were not too eager to meet a new face. But once I introduced myself, they were kind enough. The church building was neat and clean. It smelled of old things. It smelled of emptiness.

 

"One thing we lack here in our church is children. There are just no children around here!" one lady mentioned to me during lunch.

 

As I pulled out of the parking lot at the end of my time there, I drove back through the neighborhoods surrounding the large old church building. Children were everywhere! They were walking dogs, playing basketball, and chasing each other through the streets. They were children of a different color.

 

It made me think of that childhood finger play…

 

Here's the church, here's the steeple.
open it up…
but where are the people?

 

Where's the love? Oh church, have you forgotten your purpose? Do you know why the Father created you? He just wants you to love people -- the people created in His image. Oh church, where is your amazing love? If you love them, they will see Jesus in you. They will not be able to resist!

 

A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.
By this, all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.
John 13:34

 

Our colorful little community of believers may have a name, but we have no building. Maybe that's a good thing. We have met in parks, on playgrounds, in homes, in workplaces and offices. We have met new people in every location. We have no traditions, no set standards, no agenda. We are all sinners, most of us saved by grace -- some are still seeking salvation. We all have struggles. We share sorrows. We celebrate each other's victories.

 

As the weather gets colder we will no longer be able to meet outside. Where will we go? We don't know. We don't have a building. But we have each other. We have the Lord Jesus.

 

We have Amazing Love.

 

We are all one body, we have the same Spirit, and
we have all been called to the same glorious
future. There is only one Lord, one faith, one
baptism, and there is only one God and Father, who
is over us all and in us all and living through us all.

Ephesians 4:4-6









 

 

Copyright © 2011. Faith Matters by Lygia Lovelace. All rights reserved. KenLovelaceMinistries.com




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