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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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clawmute

Eternal Oases of God

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Eternal Oases of God

by Frank Lee Jennings

 

His praises come up in my mouth.

Not with my eyes, within my heart

I see, I know He's here. I press ahead

though often weak and perplexed

 

into my feeble weakness He pours strength

replaces perplexity with clarity, weariness

​​with joyful energy, rising again I go out joyful in the anointing and presence of God's Holy spirit

 

as I yield my tongue to His spirit His might

flows into me. Spiritual power now I too

can do all things through Jesus Christ.

He'll never fail leave, nor turn away from me

 

friends, kinsmen, forsake me, turn away their faces

I look, as the psalmist, for love, gentleness, a kind word, compassion, prayer, yet I abide alone, save for Jesus the Christ and His Holy Spirit

 

but I trust He will change things, create reborn hearts and lives anew, change the times and seasons

Hearts and faces He will turn again to face me

He will transform, change and turn me around to face others

 

let me regard, offer hope, love, a kind word, forgetting myself. Even as He was obedient unto death

He prayed for them, offering God's love instead of man's gall. I follow His pattern, His ways, footsteps. Come with me He says.

 

I'm astounded. I thought He had finished long ago His saving, molding, shaping, changing of me

After decades He's all new, working yet on this small pot resting in His hands, removing blemishes, flaws perfecting, adding glaze in high heat, so when struck a high clear ring

 

"Climb out of yourself" He demands

"Step into the ever new me"

Let go all holds on the old man. Divided

houses fall to ruin. God's new creations

will abide for eternity.

 

I clasp the Master's garment as we walk together into the wilderness worshipping Him as we go, side by side on the narrow path I yield to the council of His spirit. Help me Jesus

 

firey darts often fill the air around me

fired to kill and wound but God's armor

protects me. I raise the shield of faith above

while slashing back the enemy with the

sword of God's word

 

quench flaming arrows and lies

hear His words inside me. Truth

I absorb the peace He radiates

as if a dry sponge gasping for water

calmed by His spirit, I look ahead

 

wondering about beyond, but

I need not consider tomorrow

turning my meditation to Him

I recall past deliverances, sweet grace

as Samson saw at the lion's honeycomb

 

walking on, His joy lifts my heart

Faith, I will not let go of Him.

Faith, I will not stop

Faith, He will never fail or desert me

Faith, He speaks through me

 

dark forces beset and wrestle me

assaulting my peace, I stand still

over and again His words, love

We'll up inside, wisdom He's given me

my health, peace, joy are assured

 

I speak God's promises constantly

pray in the spirit. Secrets from God.

Secrets to God, a pure language

Jesus, the only sure anchor, a harbor

nothing else holds so fast and secure

 

everything else must fail, fall, break

no matter how fierce or fearful, my

enemies flee before Him, vanish

tremble at the sound of His name

I speak as the very oracles of God

 

He freely gives me strength

to move forward, again do exploits

a joyful heart, peace with purpose

I'm walking on in life, never alone

nothing must deflect my calling

 

now I through Him lift up others,

fellow travelers, seeing their needs

I speak, do what He says

comforting as I was comforted

I was not whole until broken

 

a green rising now appears in

the shimmering waves of heat

lush green growth near ahead

flowers by the flowing water, a

treasury of ministry to wayfarers

 

heat, pressure, assaults all fade

replaced by cool breezes of peace

they sweep around and through me

inside me, praise God, inside me!

each touch heals hidden wounds

 

on the long desert wilderness

journey of life, Jesus has guided

me to yet another oasis. His yoke

light, easy and a joy to bear

I need never lay it down

 

adversaries, trouble, pressure, all

rage against His pilgrims. Trying

to grind us down. Turn us aside.

He carries us on waves of grace

it is clearly seen by the unbelievers

 

I remain in His glory as long as I might

rejoicing in His magnified presence

basking in the glow of His peace

refreshed in the rays of His wonderful

gentle loving power

 

I move on, but never from Him

or from His grace, but walking

with Him I journey on life's path

a path He's set and mapped for

me. A path to His heavenly city,

an oasis I carry through the deserts

 

He carries me forward with Him, for

in Him we live, move, have our very being

His presence is the eternal oasis that goes along

we need never depart being refreshed by His grace

 

even as I journey forth and do battle

search and seek the lost, raise up

the fallen, sowing seed by the way

watering seed sown by others

being pruned by the things I suffer

 

He makes oases inside us, His children

those wearied in their journeys

He has prepared them before us so

where He is we may also be, and so dwell

in His glory. In Him we live, move, have life

 

an eternal oasis of peace and joy

flowing with living water

where we can freely drink

as we walk and do His will

ever flowing waters of life

 

Psalms 110:7

He shall drink of the brook by the wayside;

Therefore He shall lift up the head

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