HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!  Kathy and I went to dinner last night to celebrate Valentine’s Day because tonight is Celebrate Recovery.  It was a nice dinner and enjoyable time.  This morning as I began my scripture reading I was starting the book of Galatians.  Each book in Joyce Meyer’s bible is started with a statement of meaning she writes.  For Galatians she says, “Galatians teaches us that we approach God through grace…. Legalism teaches that we obey God out of obligation; grace teaches we obey out of love…. Legalism urges us to act right and grace enables us to be right.” As I got into the scripture reading I came to Gal. 2:20 which says: “I have been crucified with Christ, it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.  The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” 

As I was reading all of this I kept thinking how nice it is but was quickly believing exactly what I always do about these promises–they are nice for you and they are nice for me but….  As this happened, God immediately brought to mind the previous lesson from our recovery class.  The lesson taught about “deadness”.  It stated that when we are abused our spirit dies to feelings.  Eventually for me, I began to believe what my dad said and that my value as a man wasn’t much or my brother wouldn’t be attracted to me.  So, I had to do a lot of good work to be valuable.  Today, God wanted that lie buried at His Son’s Cross once and for all.  As I read the scripture Gal. 2:20 I saw the word “loved”.  Christ loved me—that’s the reason He gave himself for me.  God said to me at that moment, “love equals value”.  We don’t love what we don’t value–it is quite opposite.  Now it is time for me to believe. 

The amazing thing for me as I was reading all of this and pondering it, I felt a stirring deep within me.  It was no longer a stirring of fighting this off with old lies, but a stirring of believing it is actually true.  I’ve never known that stirring.  When anyone said they loved me I would quickly thank them but in my mind I’d put it in a nice box knowing they just don’t know me well enough or they’d change that statement.  God buried that lie this morning at the Cross.  I am a new creation able to love and to be loved.  I take this by FAITH, yes, but with the faith I also believe.  Wow!  This is overwhelming to me but I know it is true.  It is the sweetest Valentine I could receive!  Thank you Father!

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