4 types of love every Christian should know.

Hey there BCU Family!

Typically, you have the option of listening to our podcast, reading the notes or both. For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

    • We use the term “love” very generally, but the definitions are very specific.
    • There are more types of love to define, but our focus is on the four below.
    • Regardless of the love type or (lack of) love reciprocity, God expects us to exhibit love in all interactions.
    • Loving the hard-to-love can be a challenge, but God is able if we are willing.

BCU Love types 4

When we lay this out, BCU Fam, we see what our responsibility is in terms of loving people the way God requires—especially the unconditional, forgiving agape love that is threaded through all these love types, AND a requirement in this walk with Christ. I have to say the flesh would have us to stifle our love and save it for those who deserve it or show us love, but Matthew 5:43-48 reminds us that there is no reward in that behavior, rather we are to love our enemies. And that show-love struggle can be REAL, but not impossible—with the help and total surrender to the word and will of God. Amen? Amen!

So what are your thoughts on our topic-du-jour? How can we ensure that we show love in all of our interactions? Please head to the comments section below and let’s chat some more!

In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter , and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

The power of the surrender

Hey there BCU Family!

You have the option of listening to our podcast (click the BCU avatar below to listen), reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the podcast blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy your study! 

A number of years ago, I was praying and “randomly” (nothing with God is random–we are the random ones) asked the Lord to please make sure a particular “unpleasant” assignment that was being assigned to others never came to me.

A few years after that, someone told me I may need to take that unpleasant task on. I bristled and prayed some more.

The next year, the Lord started letting me know that what I prayed for Him NOT to give me was coming my way.

I prayed. I cried. I pleaded. I had people interceding for me. And…then it looked like someone else would get to do the work I was trying to avoid.

But shortly after that, the Lord let me know the task was officially all mine.

God was clear, BCU Fam. I sort of accepted what He told me, but as a “temporary assignment”.  You know, how you get it done, but don’t give your all? That was me. Oh, I did what He said, but half-way, half-heartedly–and with a spirit of resistance. And with each passing day, as I eagerly waited for God to reassign what I knew that He knew that  I did not want, the weight of the frustration, confusion, anger, lack of understanding and general “fighting” against God’s orders were starting to exhaust me physically, mentally and most of all in my spirit.

When I got tired enough and actually started to listen to God, He let me know to accept His will and that I was to rely only on Him to carry out what He tasked me with. Basically, I needed to surrender my understanding, my way of wanting to do things, my anger, my hurt, my pain, my will—- in exchange for trusting God to walk me through this unexpected season in my life. Key word here is surrender. Let’s look at how Webster’s dictionary defines surrender:

To cease resistance to an enemy or opponent and submit to their authority. To give in, give (oneself) up, yield, concede or submit. 

Obviously, God is not an enemy or opponent, but we can become oppositional to Him when we are unwilling or slow to obey and that never goes or ends well, right?  It 3was now time to yield to to the perfect will of God. BCU Family, can I tell you that once I fully surrendered–took my posture of submission to God, I felt so much lighter, clearer in my thoughts and wasn’t as wiped out. As a matter of fact, someone actually commented on how much more rested I looked, so I was wearing the battle on my face–that could nor have been a good look!  Let’s take a look at this whole situation through the lens of the Word of God.

  • Isaiah 55:8-9 reminds us that our ways and thoughts are not God’s at ALL. In fact, they are  are higher. So that tells us that what God has in mind for us is so much better than what our finite, limited  minds can comprehend.

  • David said, “as for God, His way is perfect, the word of the LORD is tried: He is a buckler to all those that trust in Him” (Psalms 18:30).  Perfect here means complete and whole, so that lines up the verses from Isaiah 55:8-9, right? PLUS, God’s word is proven — meaning He does what He says AND He is a buckler [a shield that protects], to those who trust Him. We are guaranteed that in exchange for our trust, God’s complete way, word and protection is with us throughout the battle.

  • Finally, Romans 8:28 says, “and we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose.  That verse tells me that God is intentional about what He allows to take place in our lives. And that intentionality serves such a greater purpose that we may not always see, like, understand or quite frankly enjoy–but it is for our good and His glory.

As we wrap up, it’s important to note that surrendering may not always mean God will immediately remove or quickly end our situation, but, as we submit to Him, His perfect (there’s that word again), peace comes. We clearly hear God’s instructions and as we obey them, we begin to feel more equipped and start to adjust to our charge, thereby adjusting to being more like Jesus. Remember—being more like Jesus now paves the way for us to be with Jesus in eternity.  Amen? Amen!

So BCU Fam, about those special assignments God has given you… you know, the spouse/family member that constantly irks, the co-worker or neighbor that rubs everyone the wrong way, the kids that half-listen, the “repeat offender” who seems to enjoy patience-testing others? With His help, I have to be intentional about surrendering to what God says when these pop quizzes come—how about you? Let’s talk about that some more in the comments section below. I’m excited to continue our conversation.


In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter , and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

How do I love Thee? Let me count the ways…

Hey there BCU Family!

You have the option of listening to our podcast (click the BCU avatar below to listen), reading the notes or BOTH. In any case, we pray the podcast blesses you. If so, please thumbs up or leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy your study! 

So, “Love Day” or Valentine’s Day is around the corner–and yes, there is some debate for some Christians around celebrating the day–and others who choose to celebrate the person they love period. Either way, for some singles it can be a tough with the hearts, flowers, candy and plans. And that sometimes brings a loneliness that, in turn, if not given to God, can effect your spirit.

Last year, I wrote a post on some things to do that you can find here. I was thinking to do the same this year, but the Lord led me to write something about Him that would bless the singles, and the BCU Family at large on February 14th and all year round.

You loved me first.

You wonderfully made me.

You were born for me.

You lived for me.

You were punished for me.

You died for me.

You rose for me.

You chose me.

You redeemed me.

You saved me.

You live in me.

You forgive me.

You heal me.

You correct me.

You are the reason I exist.

You provide for me.

You protect me.

You feed me.

You clothe me.

You instruct me.

You defend me.

Merciful,  gracious, slow to anger, patient, restorer of my soul, full of compassion, long-suffering, The Way, The Truth, The Life.

Abundant life giver, tear-drier, Wonderful Counsellor, Prince of Peace, Mighty God, Everlasting Father.

Faithful, lover of my soul, heart fixer, mind-regulator, promise-keeper, victory-giver, lifter of my head.

My rock, my sword, my shield, my fortress, prayer-answerer, sustainer, shelter, strong-tower, refuge, avenger.

Strength renewer, present help in trouble, my salvation, great and greatly to be praised. Preserver, healer, my hope, wisdom-dispenser, understanding-giver, knowledge base, instructor in my night seasons.

My light, my salvation, the strength of my life of whom shall I be afraid? Leader, guider into all truth. Comforter, King of Glory, strong and mighty in battle, good and upright, my Shepherd, so I shall NOT want  for anything.

Table preparer, Bread of life, holy and righteous, my strength like no other, my God, my bucker the form of my salvation and high tower–so worthy to be praised.

Saving strength of His anointed, center of my joy, my house of defense, nigh to the broken-hearted, saver of the contrite spirit, deliverer from all my troubles.

Cleaner of hearts, renews a right spirit within me, iniquity blotter– oh taste and see that the Lord is good. Blessed are they that that put their trust in Him!

No greater love will ever exist in this life than the love You, Jesus, have for me. When NOTHING else would help, Your love lifted me.

Jesus, You loved me first. You love me best. You love me always.

And just for Who are are, Jesus I love You.

BCU Fam, when I think of all of who Jesus is to me, it just deepens my love and commitment to Him. I know that even the most settled in Christ singles can occasionally get that pang of loneliness—that’s normal! Use that as a sign to go into prayer for more grace, and if need be, talk to a trusted friend, your pastor or you can always leave a comment or email me at Blen@BlenCouragesU.com and with God’s help, we’ll get through the tough time together!

What are some ways YOU or your single friends work through the Love Day or any day loneliness? Are you married? coupled? What advice do you have to share? Please drop a line in the comments section below so we can continue our conversation!

In the meantime, if you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter , and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

But I DESERVE it right NOW!

Hey there BCU Family!

Typically, you have the option of listening to our podcast, reading the notes or both. For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

  • Merriam Webster has a few definitions for the word deserve:
  • a. Recognition; praise; to be worthy of.
  • b. To do something or show qualities worthy of reward or punishment due to actions or qualities.
  • c. Earned or merited.
  • Typically, if you deserve something, it’s right that you get it because of the way you behaved.
  • Honoring others is in line with the Word of God. Romans 13:7 encourages us to give honor to whom honor is due.
  • Sometimes, we feel like we deserve the blessings of God when, where and how we want it—based on our “worthiness”.

 Scripture references

We love Him, because He first loved us (I John 4:19).

[Jesus said] If you love Me, keep My commandments (John 14:15). 

 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved (John 3:16-17). 

Matthew 7:7-11

7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
8 For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened.
9 Or what man is there of you, whom if his son ask bread, will he give him a stone?
10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning (James 1:17).

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: (Ecclesiastes 3:1).

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

Isaiah 55:8-9

8 For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the Lord.

9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.

Proverbs 3:5

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth? declare, if thou hast understanding. (Job 38:4).

Surely your turning of things upside down shall be esteemed as the potter’s clay: for shall the work say of him that made it, He made me not? or shall the thing framed say of him that framed it, He had no understanding? (Isaiah 29:16).


BCU Fam, the Lord got my attitude all the way together and for that I am GRATEFUL! It’s so much better to serve God out of love versus keeping lists. What has been your experience with naming and claiming? Did you ever feel like you did or did not deserve something from God? Please head down to the comment section so we can continue our conversation!

If you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter,  and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU

When the “forecast” changes…

Hey there BCU Family!

Typically, you have the option of listening to our podcast, reading the notes or both. For this post, because of the informal format, please tune into the podcast recording and refer to the written post for the highlights. We pray the post blesses and encourages you. If so, please thumbs up AND leave a comment! Thank you and enjoy the post!

Podcast highlights:

    • Whether or not we are walking with God, we are ALL made in God’s image.
    • No matter your God-given education level, gifts, talents or knowledge, it is LIMITED.
    • While we have our own ideas on how situations in our lives should turn out, sometimes, God has a different plan.
    • While God’s way does not feel good to the flesh, His way is always better.
    • How we really feel about God changing “our” plans comes out in our thoughts, words and actions.

 Scripture references

Job 37:5-6

5 God thundereth marvellously with His voice; great things doeth He, which we cannot comprehend.

6 For He saith to the snow, be thou on the earth; likewise to the small rain, and to the great rain of His strength.

And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).

Galatians 5:17; 24-25

17 For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would.

24-25 And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

Isaiah 55:8-9

8 For My thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways My ways, saith the Lord.

9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts.

 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you (I Thessalonians 5:18).

Proverbs 3:5

Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.


WHOO!!! This one is easy to spot in others, BCU Fam, but we really have to look at ourselves here first, right? So what is your gut reaction when the “forecast changes”? How challenging will it be to allow the Lord to adjust your attitude knowing that God has our best interests at heart?  Let’s talk some more about this—head down to the comment section so we can continue our dialogue!

If you have not subscribed to BlenCouragesU.com, please do so! It’s free and a good place to get the encouragement, inspiration and information based the Word of God! Additionally, you can also see what we are up to on Facebook, Twitter,  and Instagram! You can also listen in and subscribe to the podcast on Stitcher Radio , Google Play, and Apple podcasts!

Thank you SO much for stopping by. God bless, keep and make His face to shine upon you as you #StayOnTheWall!

Love,

BCU