It is time for the church, the Bride, to come back to a revelation of first love.
I write this with affection and value to you, church of South Florida, the eklesia. I thank the Father for you, who has stood firm and stayed planted in a dry and weary land where at times it seems there is no water. You, church of South Florida, have endured. This is no small thing. Unity across borders, boundaries and denominations has strengthened you. The Father is so proud. Unity will always command His blessing.
However, beloved, in the midst of enduring, in the midst of building stronger systems and structures to sustain the vision, have you lost your first love? Where is your hunger? Where is your fire? What or who are you worshiping? Have you exchanged longing for fuller auditoriums? Simplicity for entertainment? A full gospel for a more palatable message?
The First Love that comes from Christ
“I know your deeds and your toil, and your patient endurance, and that you cannot tolerate those who are evil, and have tested and critically appraised those who call themselves apostles (special messengers, personally chosen representatives, of Christ), and [in fact] are not, and have found them to be liars and impostors; and [I know that] you [who believe] are enduring patiently and are bearing up for My name’s sake, and that you have not grown weary [of being faithful to the truth]. But I have this [charge] against you, that you have left your first love [you have lost the depth of love that you first had for Me]” (Revelation 2:2-4 AMP).
“Go and proclaim in the hearing of Jerusalem that this is what the LORD says: ‘I remember the devotion of your youth, your love as a bride, how you followed Me in the wilderness, in a land not sown.’” (Jeremiah 2:2)
He’s calling us
I believe that He is calling us back to love in this hour like never before, to lay down business as usual and choose simplicity, looking at the face of Jesus, to be changed by His glory and the beauty of His face. It is His goodness and mercy that is leading us here. To a recognition of our own inability and poverty of spirit to fully acknowledge our need for Him. This starts in the place of worship. Worship is a powerful force that we as humanity have been given to wield. We are all worshiping something. It is what we were made to do. Worship is the object of our attention and affection, something in which value is placed. To worship is to show reverence or adoration to someone or something. What we are worshiping can often be determined by what we are giving our time to or the amount of space something occupies our thoughts.
Do you remember what it was like when you first met Jesus? Like really met Him? I do. Every word, every song moved my heart. There was a softness, a tenderness, but also a passion and a fire. I wanted nothing else but to spend as much time as I possibly could with Him. I had tasted of something greater than anything this world had to offer me. A love more powerful than any counterfeits gave me. This love changed me, reached into my darkness and pain and told me a different story.
This past year has been one of remembering for me. Calling to mind and reminding my soul of this love. Letting my gaze return to Him and to be captivated by His face. Amplifying what times of worship look like. No agenda, just Jesus. Learning how to remain and meditating on what it means to be one with Him – to be continually ruined by His beauty. This has changed everything: the way I see, the way I live, the way I love. He is calling us back. Not just to the love that we experienced at first, but to a love that has been matured and enriched by our years of history with Him. It’s even sweeter now than it was at the beginning!
“I’m coming back to the heart of worship, when it’s all about you, all about you Jesus.”
Meghan Burke is on the worship team at Harbour Church. If you’re a worship leader interested in getting involved with Village Hymns, please email [email protected] or visit our website at villagehymns.com.
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