“To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: ‘The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands.
“‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. Yet this you have: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.’ Revelation 2:1-7
As I sat taking some quiet time with the Lord, He brought this scripture to mind. I began to read the words and to study deeper just what God is showing us here.
First of all, I have to say I love the Lord, and the way He addresses things with us. He first points out what the church in Ephesus has done well. He acknowledges their hard work and for way they have persevered and resisted sin. They have stayed alert of false prophets, and they have endured hardships and not grown weary. That is a pretty great lists of fruit.
And then there is a But….
There is something God has against them that need to be addressed. They have abandoned their first love. They have forgotten what they had been forgiven of and where God had found them and rescued them from.
This can happen with us, and it has happened over the years for me.
We can walk with the Lord, serve day and night in ministry, and fight the good fight. We can follow the rules and stay alert for false prophets, and after awhile it can become robotic almost. We start out doing those things because of our intense love for God ,and our appreciation for all He has forgiven us and, saved us from.
Just like in marriage. We get married, and that honeymoon stage and fresh time of being in love is wonderful, and then life hits, children come into the picture, and trials come. One day you wake up just going through the motions, losing sight of that first love.
And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony. Matthew 24:12-14a
God warns us that as times go on, and lawlessness and sin abound, the love of many will grow cold. We need to guard our hearts. We need to take time to step back, lay our hearts down to the Lord, and ask Him to show us where we need to repent and seek Him to see if our hearts are in danger of growing cold.
I have been taking some time to do that. It is interesting because we can be walking with the Lord, serving in ministries, leading bible studies, and even writing books, yet our hearts are in need or rekindling.
I have had to ask Him to shine his light to warm those cold, dark, and dreary places of my heart. I want Him to continue shining through me. I desire to be effective for Him on this earth, individually, in my home, and in the body of Christ.
How about you? How is your heart today?
Are there places inside you that have gone cold?
Have you been justifying sin in your life?
Have you been going through the motions, yet forgetting your first love?
Let’s bring our hearts together here today before the feet of Jesus. Heavenly Father, we ask for forgiveness for the ways we have forgotten who You are and for the ways You have loved us, forgiven us, and rescued us. Shine Your light on our hearts and warm those places that have gone cold. Fill us with Your Holy Spirit and rekindle that love for You, each other, Your church, and the World. May You shine even brighter than ever through us. In Jesus Name, Amen!