Monday, January 11, 2010

Reduce Me To Love - Review

Long time... No post... My reason, I have started a personal blog... While I am having so much fun with my posts there, I don't want this conversation to cease. So, here is my latest post that I think will certainly challenge complacency. It is more or less a book review, but also a bit of my journaling related to my "love walk".

I'm cheating a little bit.  I started reading "The Love Revolution" by Joyce Meyer last week, and still have half of it left.  It is fantastic.  I have already been trying to figure out how I am going to post a review that won't be way too long to read.  Also, I need to really work on my time management (one of my New Year's Goals) and make the time to get my reading in so that I can keep up with my book per week goal.

This week I am going to post a review on the "predecessor" to "The Love Revolution", "Reduce Me To Love".  I came across this book this past fall.  I was beginning to study the fruit of the spirit in my quiet time, and I kept coming back to "Love".

But the fruit of the spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is now law. - Galatians 5:21-23

Truly, I felt that the Lord kept calling me back to love, because without love it was difficult to start working on joy, and without joy to start working on peace, etc.  Notice that these nine qualities are the "fruit" not "fruits" of the spirit.  And, they are from the spirit.  They are not from us, or anything earthly, they are drawn directly from the spirit who desires to live in us.  So, naturally, love is hard and the devil attacks love at every moment.  I wanted to become saturated in love, and to truly understand the love from the Spirit.  To love as our Father loved us that he would sacrifice His son so that we might live eternally in heaven.

Admittedly, as I was studying this and praying about this, I came across a "tweet" from Heidi Montag (if you know me you know that "The Hills" television show is was my guilty pleasure).  Heidi had tweeted about how amazing this book called "Reduce Me To Love" by Joyce Meyer is.  So, I thought, what the heck.  Ordered it from half.com and started my journey into a "love walk".

My Women's Connections group just got done reading this book, all together, and talking about it (more of a book club than Bible study, if you will).  So, I thought this would be a great time to pull together my thoughts.

First, and most important, if you can find a copy of this book, read it.  And then read it again.  Then give your copy to someone else to read.  And then buy another copy for yourself and read it again.  It is so wonderful and moving.  That is my review.  It is so hard for me to pick out just one or two things to hit on with this book, because I need to read it again.

The first time I read through this book, I did some private journaling and I will share just a small excerpt and hope that you are inspired to read this book:

In the Bible, God tells us that love is even more important than faith! In I Corinthians 13:2 Paul says "if we have enough faith to move mountains and have not love, we are nothing". 

I know my faith is strong right now, but I know my love walk is at the "still learning to crawl" stage. It is our personal love walk that gives us confidence before God and enables us to receive from Him what we ask for in prayer. 

I John 3:18-23 says "Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with actions and in truth. This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and we set our hearts at rest in his presence whenever our hearts condemn us. For God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything. Dear friends, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God and receive from him anything we ask, because we obey his commands and do what pleases him." 

Meyer points out: Be Christlike. Be His disciple. If I love God, I need to act like it.

[We] have the ability to minister to others. She says, We live in a world of people looking for something real, something tangible. They are looking for love and God is love. I can tangibly show them that. I'm reminded here of a quote "Your walk talks and your talk talks, but your walk talks louder than your talk talks." 

[As a parent I immediately think of] my son. When he was baptized Kendall said "there will come a time in Matthew's life that it will not be what you say but how you act" that raises Matthew to be a God-fearing Christian. [I do not care "what" Matthew becomes, but "who", it is my highest desire that He would know the Lord and love without inhibition].

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