Posts Tagged ‘love’

“getting some love”

March 4, 2011 1 comment

I hear these phrases like “so and so artist is getting some love from other artists in music” and it makes me sad. Why?

Because they are misusing the word “love” – that’s not what this is! It’s not love. It’s attention. It’s publicity. It’s respect. But it’s not love. It’s not unconditional love for sure! It’s not the love of Christ.

I think today our society really doesn’t even know what love is. Certainly, in most marriages, people think “love” fades and goes away which leads to divorce. But true love is a choice. Love gives. Love is an action.

I guess in that sense, “getting some love” might make more sense but it’s still a stretch.

I know I am nit-picking but I want people to think biblically rather than like this world.

-Mark (striving to think more like God who is The Truth in Love)

Categories: Marriage Tags: ,

His-story of TIL (quick)

December 19, 2010 1 comment

TIL was started three years ago. It was inspired by an opportunity I had to teach on addictions at a pastor’s conference. After that conference, I saw the great need to train pastors and all saints for the work of ministry. Therefore, TIL was birthed as an equipping ministry TO the body of Christ.

Six months after our miraculous non-profit status was obtained (that’s a great testimony to God’s faithfulness), we began counseling. We met with 2 families with 3 counselors. Today, we have so much going that I cannot even keep up with it. We are doing over 70 sessions a week with nearly 50 counselors some weeks! God has increased our ministry exponentially.

Even better, we began to see God save people and to reconcile relationships. Marriages were saved (not all!) but many. Most importantly, God was and continues to be glorified.

When TIL was birthed, my desire was to develop a “peace-making” side to the ministry to resolve conflicts biblically rather than going to court! Now, by God’s grace, we have the right person to lead this side of the ministry. Praise God!

Now, we minister at The Lovelady Center, Christ Health Center, Philadelphia Baptist Church, Bethel Baptist Church, and The Church at Brook Hills. Wow!

God is faithful to His message. He is still in the transforming “hearts” business!

-Mark (glad to be a small part of this ministry)

“Satan loves you almost as much as you do!”

December 17, 2010 Leave a comment

Someone reminded me recently by saying this: “Satan loves you almost as much as you do!”

That’s a strong statement when in reality Satan hates us according to John 10:10: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” Only Jesus really loves you because He alone is the good shepherd of your soul!

But the point behind that comment is somewhat true. Satan presents himself as an angel of light according to 2 Cor. 11:14: “And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light.” Therefore, Satan wants you to think that he loves you and wants good things for you that you already want yourself.

But a bigger enemy than Satan that you must face daily is your own flesh and its lusts & desires for the things of this world. Your flesh gets tempted by Satan but you must learn to say “no” to your flesh and Satan while saying “yes” to obeying God and doing what is right.

We need to love God more than anything else in the world, including ourselves. When we understand this, Luke 14:26-27 makes sense as Jesus said to the multitude: “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. – The Holy Bible : English standard version. 2001 (Lk 14:26-27). Wheaton: Standard Bible Society.

Count the costs of following Jesus. You must be willing to deny yourself and “bear your cross” which means you must consider yourself DEAD daily to be His disciple. This is the message of biblical counseling, too, to deny yourself for the glory of God.

Strong stuff!

-Mark (loving myself less so that I can love Him more)

Grace…to sin?

November 19, 2010 Leave a comment

Real grace is always truthful.

Real truth is always gracious and loving.

Extreme grace without any trace of the truth is not gracious.

Extreme truth without any trace of grace is not truth.

My head is spinning. Is yours?

In other words, sometimes people think they are being gracious by simply being truthful alone. AND others think they are being gracious by omitting the truth but they are really harming the other person, especially in biblical counseling.

Only truth in love and truth and grace together are acceptable in biblical counseling. The counselee must be loved with the truth. John 8:32 reminds us that the truth sets one free from sin.

-Mark (balancing truth and grace by speaking the truth in love to others)

Parents…can they speak the truth in love?

October 22, 2010 Leave a comment

It’s amazing to me that we live in a day and age when parents expect others to teach and discipline their own children. Some parents expect their church to teach their children about God. Some parents expect their children to learn good manners by working at Chic-Fil-a. Some parents believe that the military will give their children the structure and discipline they need to thrive in today’s world.

It’s sad.

So who is responsible for instructing children in all things? How about the parents.

Parents don’t own their children. Parents are stewards of their children because God owns their children. Parents are to instruct and discipline the children God gave them and to do so in the way that HE alone instructs. Those children belong to God and He wants them raised to know Him and His word in an intimate way. They need the truth in love.

-Mark (grateful for my 4 and knowing I can do better as a parent)

Are we loving people with the TRUTH?

August 29, 2010 Leave a comment

When you think about it, what do lost people really need?

If you are driving your car somewhere unfamiliar and you get lost, what do you really need? Do you need love if you are lost in your car somewhere in an unfamiliar place? Love is good but love by itself is not enough. You also need direction. You need a map. You need the truth or else you will remain lost though you will feel better about it since you are loved.

Lost yet loved. That describes many unbelievers today. They are still lost but boy, oh, boy are we loving them with free food, free stuff, and free ______ (fill in the blank). These people are lost and don’t have a map of God’s truth so they will remain lost.

Lost people need the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15).

The truth is always loving though it may not be delivered in a loving way or loving tone of voice. We need to learn how to present His truth no matter what the response may be. We must leave the results up to Him.

So that’s why our ministry is called “Truth in Love” – the truth comes first but it must be wrapped, dipped, marinated, and saturated in the love of Christ. Otherwise, it’s a banging gong or a clanging cymbal.

I Corinthians 13:1 – “If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.”

-Mark (John Perkins said it right: Love is the final fight and the Truth must be wrapped in Love for it to really be the truth!)

Love in August? Valentine’s Day in August?

August 21, 2010 Leave a comment

Love. Isn’t it great? Don’t you love LOVE? I do. Even in August when it’s not Valentine’s Day, I love LOVE. Because God is love.

When do you love LOVE best? I really love love on Valentine’s Day when you get hugs, kisses, and chocolates. But that’s a selfish kind of love, isn’t it?

Is a hug the only way to express love? How does God express love to us, His dear children? Hebrews 12:5-11 tells us:

You have forgotten the encouraging words that call you his children: “My child, don’t think the Lord’s discipline is worth nothing, and don’t stop trying when he corrects you. 6 The Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as his child. So hold on through your sufferings, because they are like a father’s discipline. God is treating you as children. All children are disciplined by their fathers. 8 If you are never disciplined (and every child must be disciplined), you are not true children. 9 We have all had fathers here on earth who disciplined us, and we respected them. So it is even more important that we accept discipline from the Father of our spirits so we will have life. 10 Our fathers on earth disciplined us for a short time in the way they thought was best. But God disciplines us to help us, so we can become holy as he is. 11 We do not enjoy being disciplined. It is painful, but later, after we have learned from it, we have peace, because we start living in the right way.”

The Holy Bible : New Century Version , containing the Old and New Testaments. 1991 (Heb 12:5). Dallas, TX: Word Bibles.

Wow, God loves me while He disciplines me. It hurts and doesn’t feel like love, but that’s why He defines love not me and not any man. Only the Lord knows what true love is. You and I are really clueless. We just simply need to trust Him and allow Him to transform us into the image of His Son. That’s true love.

-Mark (learning to embrace the real love of God as He disciplines me for my good and His glory)