And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. – 1 John 4:16
First, we need to know the love that God has for us, and then we’ve got to learn to rely on it.
When we do life with anyone for a significant amount of time, we begin to talk in the same ways, share the same values, and even dream about things together. Consider our families or best friends… we spend a lot of time together and talk about the deepest parts of ourselves that we do not share with others. If our best friends tend to make poor decisions, it begins to rub off on us. If our parents tend to be kind and loving, we tend to be the same way. This is because the things and people that will influence us the most are the things and people we spend the most time with.
With the understanding that we are children of God, we will want to spend more time with our Father. Talking and interacting with God makes us more like Him. God is love, and the identity we are given as His children is love. Love defines us. When we live knowing that one fact, we believe that we are loved, we are worth loving, and we will overflow with love into the world around us.
Be encouraged that if you’ve been finding your identity in the wrong places, you can change. You can live in God’s love and with that you can’t help but be a good influence on the people you spend time with. There are untold stories that will unfold, people whose lives you will touch as you realize who you are and walk in that truth. The world is waiting… Who will you know and rely on? Who will you believe?
Research: What Can I Do?
For today’s research, you’re going to begin getting a little more specific. Look at your list of organizations. Start learning about exactly what they do and how they do it. Do they run off donations? Do they have long term projects that meet needs or do they focus on specific moments where people need help? Next, begin looking at how to volunteer or donate to these organizations. What’s the time commitment you’d need to make? What does your budget look like right now? Begin thinking about which organization you’d most like to work with.
Activity: Get Outside Yourself
Today’s activity is a little strange, but stick with us. Look around your house, outside, or at school today, and choose one item that you feel represents you. Maybe it’s something easy to explain, like a book or movie, a stuffed animal, or a water bottle with stickers. Maybe it’s a little more complicated—a pinecone, a sharpened pencil, or a plant. Pick something that makes sense to carry around, and that you’d feel comfortable explaining to others if they ask you about it. Think about how and why you relate to your object, and when people ask you about your item, explain carefully and thoughtfully with the goal of helping them understand you a little better.