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XTreme Love
by Debbie OConnor
12/27/05
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"Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you." Ephesians 5:14b

I love Jesus. All I want is to know and love Him more.

I want to sing, dance, write, speak, give, and live for Him alone. I want to be in His presence every second. I want to talk about Him all day long to anyone who’ll listen. He is the first person I think of in the morning and the last person I think of at night. I am madly, excessively, extremely in love with God.

Call me a radical? Agreed. I’m a fanatic? Thanks. Call me whatever you want. I know the One I love. I am learning that His approval is all I need.

We’ve all heard the expression—“She’s so Heavenly minded, she’s no earthly good.” Religious fundamentalism is constantly in the news. Extremism is considered dangerous, particularly when it is associated with religion. Moderation is touted as the key to weight loss, happiness, peace and longevity. There may be some wisdom in moderation, but not when it comes to loving God.

While some forms of extremism are feared, in other venues extremism is celebrated. Our evening television line-up testifies to our need to push limits. X-Treme Sports, extreme makeovers, and extreme home remodeling are just a few examples. Mediocrity is boring, life-sapping, and fruitless. If we cannot get beyond it in our own lives, we like to watch others get beyond it on TV.

Jesus loved us to the extreme. He said what he meant and He meant what He said—all the time, in front of everyone, regardless of the cost. There was nothing cautious or moderate about Him. He was smart, though. He did what He did deliberately, at the time it should be done. It cost Him everything to love us, but He thought we were worth it.

We live in a world that deifies compromise and tolerance. Peace at any price should be tattooed on our heads. While compromise and tolerance have their places, there are things we cannot compromise and should not tolerate. Evil exists, and the church must stand up for righteousness. We are the “light of the world.” Matthew 5:14

The question is: How do we light the world?

An expert in the law once asked Jesus, "Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?"

Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments." Matthew 22:36-40

We will burn brightly for God if we are willing to do two things: love God with reckless, wholehearted abandon, and love others as we love ourselves. The more we love God, the easier it becomes to love others. The more we love others, the more the world will see. Our light will outshine anybody or anything that tries to hide it.

X-Treme Love—Christ-like love—is sacrificial. We will pay the price, as Jesus did. Many will call us foolish. Criticism, rejection, and ridicule will haunt us. We may have to give to our own detriment, maybe even place ourselves in danger. It will hurt. It may cost us everything, as it did Jesus.

In the end, though many reject us, some will believe. And we will really know our God.

Are we ready to lose our lives so we can find them? Prepared to love completely, recklessly, wholeheartedly, and fearlessly? Are we willing to stop playing it safe?

God help me. I am.


NIV


If you died today, are you absolutely certain that you would go to heaven? You can be! TRUST JESUS NOW

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Member Comments
Member Date
B Brenton 30 Dec 2005
Amen Deb! This article makes me a little jealous (with 'Godly jealousy' of course)... Recently I realise I may have "lost my first love" and I want it back desperately. Your article has highlighted that. I want to love like that again... keep being zealous, sister!
B Brenton 30 Dec 2005
Amen Deb! This article makes me a little jealous (with 'Godly jealousy' of course)... Recently I realise I may have "lost my first love" and I want it back desperately. Your article has highlighted that. I want to love like that again... keep being zealous, sister!
Crista Darr 28 Dec 2005
Wow, I love this. Your love for Jesus burns like a brilliant light. This piece is on fire - Holy Spirit fire! It awakens us to LOVE, not just in words, but with our lives. I'm so blessed by your work. Thank you!
Joyce Poet 27 Dec 2005
"Call me a radical? Agreed. I’m a fanatic? Thanks. Call me whatever you want. I know the One I love. I am learning that His approval is all I need." AMEN! Imagine every Christian, worldwide, loving the Lord with reckless abandon. What would happen to evil? Well... I, for one, am a radical, a fanatic, right there with ya! I dance and sing and cry and laugh "foolishly" before the Lord and love every second of it.
Lucian Thompson 27 Dec 2005
Wooahh…Articles like this make me want to shout and dance and I can’t dance, not like the world dances anyway. I can do the Pentecostal roll and the Evangelical hop, and I am doing them right now!!! Thanks for the workout and ,”You Go Girl!” Back flip…tuck and roll…halleluiah!!!




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