Returning to Our First Love

Revelation 3:2-4 (NIV)
"You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love."

Some of us may remember well the time when we first accepted Christ. We experienced great joy in our newfound faith. We were on fire for the Lord in all that we did. Many of us became involved in church activities and witnessing. Our love, devotion, and service to Christ shown as a bright light to all.

But something happened over time. Our work for the church and service to others continued on at about the same pace, but our light dimmed. The enthusiasm became dull. Service to the Lord and to others became a duty rather than something done out of love.

No matter what service we do for Christ, what sacrifices we make for Him, or what hardships we may suffer for His name, it means nothing if it is not done out of love. 1 Corinthians 13:3 says, "If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing." Love for God must be the primary motivation for our service to Him and to others. If we fall into serving out of duty or obligation, then the love that is supposed to keep us connected to Christ and radiate to others will weaken.

We need to remain ever mindful why we serve Christ. Is it out of love, or is it out of obligation? If we find that our service to the church and to others has lost its joy or enthusiasm, let us regain our first love by remembering all that the Lord has done for us and continues to do for us. Let our gratitude for His grace cause us to serve Him and others out of a love that grows each day.

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