Tag: love of God

The Spirit of Encouragement

Preached January 27, 2013 at First Assembly of God, Burlington, Iowa.

The Spirit of Encouragement

Then Barnabas went on to Tarsus to look for Saul. When he found him, he brought him back…(Acts 11:25-26 NLT)

Barnabas, the son of encouragement, exemplified the spirit of encouragement.

I. The Spirit of encouragement seeks those in hiding.
A. Paul was in hiding, beaten down, bruised…
B. Barnabas sought him and found him.
1. Luke 19:10
2. Adam and Eve
3. Moses
4. David
5. Jonah
6. The Prodigal
C. The serpent fights to keep you down and away from God.

II. The Spirit of encouragement restores to wholeness and purpose
A. Seek and Save, power of God to salvation, gifts and callings!
B. Salvation – completeness, fruitfulness, God’s original intent!
C. See list of names above – ex. “that which was lost”
D. Barnabas helped “bring him back” to ministry (Galatians 6:1)

III. Encourage – to impart, give, inspire with courage.
A. Courage helps you do what you didn’t think was possible!
B. Courage helps you face what couldn’t be faced!
C. Courage gives you a hope and a future!

Close – Encouragement is crying out for you!
A. Come out of hiding – ADAM! GET UP! EVE! GET UP!
B. Be saved, be restored to God’s original intent…WHOLENESS
C. Face what you couldn’t face, believe what you couldn’t believe…
D. Respond to the Spirit of encouragement – BECOME AN ENCOURAGER


Love Is An Odd Thing

HeartLove is an odd thing!

It gives without conditions,
It isn’t fearful of what might happen.
It isn’t blind; in fact, love sees things as they really are.
It is like a mirror, accurately reflecting the condition of the one who stops long enough to gaze into it.

It doesn’t demand it’s own way, or complain if inconvenienced.
It won’t require of others anything it hasn’t already done.
It will not steal, rape, or injure. It simply can’t.
It is intimate, but not obscene.

It is secure, in that it doesn’t need to be accepted to know its value.
It never takes advantage of others; their mistakes, their weaknesses, their generosity, or their trust.
It trusts in. It weeps for. It laughs with. Others.
It fulfills every commandment, plus.

It’s like a saucer that sits under a shaky cup of hot coffee. Catching, protecting, gathering, supporting.

It says one thing and does it.
It’s always trying to find a way to reconcile, yet won’t force its way.
It is the motivation behind every great deed.
It doesn’t require a platform to speak from.

It turns a deaf ear to criticism, yet hears the heart’s cry of the lost and hurting.
It outlasts every threat, every rejection, every indifference.
It is imitated by many, but captured by few.
It is the strongest force in the universe, but gentle enough to caress a broken heart.

It is beyond reason, and our wildest dream.

It won’t be fenced in, can’t be bullied.
It’s too good to be true, yet it is the foundation of truth.
It can not be blocked, stopped, quenched, or killed.
It can be ignored and refused. But it lives on, keeps on.

Love is God, God is love.

It is an odd thing.

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