Restoring First Love

I don’t know where I first read this list. I don’t know who pointed me to it. I don’t know if it was first on some internet site or first in print before internet. Today I found it on a number of sites, unattributed as to authorship. I wish I could give someone credit for it. But something tells me that whoever put it together was simply interested in helping others diagnose their own souls so that they could return to their first love for the Lord. They weren’t interested in credit. They were interested in helping Christians life passionately for and like Jesus.

“To the angel of the church in Ephesus write: ‘The words of him who holds the seven stars in his right hand, who walks among the seven golden lampstands.

“‘I know your works, your toil and your patient endurance, and how you cannot bear with those who are evil, but have tested those who call themselves apostles and are not, and found them to be false. I know you are enduring patiently and bearing up for my name’s sake, and you have not grown weary. 4But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first.Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. If not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent. Yet this you have: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers I will grant to eat of the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.’   (Revelation 2:2-7)

So, from the pen of someone else, to you, for your edification, a tool to diagnose and treat the malady of the soul called 

“a loss of first love” for Christ:

    1. When my delight in the Lord is no longer as great as my delight in someone or something else, I have lost my “first-love.” (Mk 12:30)
    2. When my soul does not long for times of rich fellowship in God’s word or in prayer, I have lost my “first-love.” (Mk. 13:30; Ps. 42:1)
    3. When my thoughts during leisure moments do not reflect upon the Lord, I have lost my “first-love.” (Mk. 12:30; Ps. 10:4)
    4. When I claim to be “only human” and easily give in to those things I know displease the Lord, I have lost my “first-love.” (Mk. 12:30; Jn. 14:15 and 15:10)
    5. When I do not willingly and cheerfully give to God’s work or to the needs of others, I have lost my “first-love.” (1 Jn 3:17) 
    6. When I cease to treat every Christian brother and sister as I would the Lord, I have lost my “first-love.”  (Mt. 25:40; John 13:34)
    7. When I view the commands of Christ as restrictions to my happiness rather than expressions of his love, I have lost my “first-love.” ( Jn. 13:21)
    8. When I inwardly strive for the acclaim of this world rather than the approval of the Lord, I have lost my “first-love.”  (Jn. 15:19; 1 Jn. 2:15)
    9. When I fail to make Christ or his words known because I fear rejection, I have lost my “first-love.”  (Jn. 15:20)
    10. When I refuse to give up an activity, which I know is offending a weaker brother, I have lost my “first-love.”  (Rom. 14:15)
    11. When I become complacent to sinful conditions around me, I have lost my “first-love.” (Mt. 24:12)
    12. When I am unable to forgive another for offending me, I have lost my “first-love.” ( 1 Jn. 4:20)

All of these raise the question, if I find that this is true of me, what do I do?

Repent.

Cry out to God and confess the poverty of your spirit and the coldness of your heart and ask Him to change help you do what verse 5 above tells you to do. Keep crying out until verse 5 becomes your experience.


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