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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
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Rob

Answers to prayer

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Sorry, I decided to remove what I wrote on here because I feel it was too personal. I'm not sure how to remove the post altogether but I appreciate the feedback I've had.

Edited by Rob

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Rob, I think part of the answered prayer is the Lord encouraging you. 1 Corinthians 2:4-5 speaks of this sort of thing:

 

"4 My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, 5 so that your faith might not rest on human wisdom, but on God’s power."

 

That being said -- and provided by the Lord -- we must be careful to not become dependent on these demonstrations of the fact that Jesus Christ is very much alive and active in our lives. If we place too much emphasis on these things, we are in very serious danger of being tricked in all sorts of ways, and such tricks are often very devastating.

 

We find the guidance we need throughout the Bible, so it is really important to make a regular habit of Bible reading, and I strongly recommend daily. It is also very important to read every book in the Bible at least once so you don't miss anything, because the nuggets and clues are scattered throughout. Which brings us to the next important concept found in Romans chapter 12, verse 2

 

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--his good, pleasing and perfect will."

 

The first step in having your mind renewed and transformed is prayer. The kind of prayer that leads to these profound breakthroughs depends on two critical things, privacy and honesty. I have recommended to some people to pray in their car when they don't have dependable privacy at home. However you work out the privacy part, it is really important that you be certain that no one, absolutely NO one can overhear, because the next thing I am going to recommend is that you be completely honest with Jesus Christ. You are safe with Him in ways you can never be safe with anyone else, and I assure you He can and does hear our prayers. Please do give this a try for yourself. Now this doesn't mean you have to have absolute privacy any time and every time you pray, of course that isn't necessary, but you will need privacy at the times you'll need to get really honest.

 

You're going to have good days and bad days. Some things are going to come easy, some things are going to come hard, and it is entirely possible some things could happen that are enough to try to break your faith. I have experienced all of these things that I have spoken to you of so far... The things that are difficult and or are confusing are things that you should bring to deep and persistent prayer. As you work through the Bible, you will begin to see that pretty much everything we go through has happened to someone mentioned in the Bible somewhere, and there is guidance for how they coped and what God did to help them cope.

 

I hope you stick with Christianity, Rob, and I hope you grow in Christ. Getting good at all this takes time, but it is the most amazing, healing, and even fascinating thing you could ever do. God bless you deeply, In Christ, Meg

 

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