Posts tagged ‘Christ’

Aug 30 2010

Thoughts on Being Aware of the Lord

Researching John Robert Steven’s life, I’ve discovered so many things that he was interested in; so for him to say that he discarded his hobbies just shows how much he let go of in order to follow the Lord fully (see the previous quote).

He loved photography and film. He loved music and history. He loved to tell jokes and loved to laugh. He set himself to serve the Lord with all his heart, but no one would say that it was to the detriment of his vivacity and personality. And in all of these things that he loved to do, he never let them distract him from an awareness of God. To me, this is a great balance, but it all must start with God.

John said, “I do not think that anything is greater than coming into an awareness of the Lord.” And this is what I want to apply in my life. God is first, and everything else is second—at best! If an awareness of God is our foremost desire, then everything else in our lives will fall into place.

This is why John Stevens is such a great example to me. He never forsook his first love, and everything he did lined up to his relationship to God. However, it never robbed him of his joy for life! This is how we know we’re doing it right: the joy of the Lord and the joy of life must be present, otherwise I would say that our awareness of God is lacking. If we know God, we will have His love in our hearts. As I John 4:8 says,”The one who does not love does not know God, for God is love.”

 

Aug 12 2010

Thoughts on Not Criticizing

When I read John Robert Stevens’ writings, I feel strongly his heart of care and concern. I know I’ve written about this earlier, but so many people I’ve talked to about him often say the same thing: John Robert Stevens was a man who loved God’s people very deeply.

The quote previous to this post is another great example of this, because the other thing I hear from so many people who knew him is that he was a man of great perception. He was able to look at people and the Holy Spirit revealed to him their strengths and their weaknesses.

I was thinking recently how it’s so easy to love someone when you are not that aware of their problems, but it takes a greater depth of love once you see the issues. Well, John saw the issues very clearly, but he had a commitment and love in his heart to help people. He had faith for every man, no matter what they were facing! As he said: “God did not give me the deep insight of the word of wisdom or the word of knowledge or discernment so that I should criticize, but rather that I should help.”

I’m thankful that John Robert Stevens established this kind of relating among believers in his churches, especially since I pastor one of them! I see first-hand the fruit of his heart and his teaching in the people who attend Grace Chapel of Honolulu.

Of course, we all know where this attitude comes from. It comes from the Lord and His Word. It could only come from Him! It is exactly what Christ taught us in the Book of John:

“A ​​new commandment I give to you, ​​that you love one another, ​even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35)