Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Extravagant Love

Tuesday night at CRU, Darren Russo spoke on Extravagant Love. As humans, we all have a need for 2 things...significance and love. If the need is not met it leads to loneliness and depression. Extravagant love changes people.
Ephesians 2:1-10 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Our Condition

We were dead in our sin and in the way that we walked. When we follow the course of the world, we have secular value. We become self focused, self governing, and self centered. It's all about us...we call the shots. When we follow the world, we follow the enemy of God whose ultimate purpose is to destroy the purpose of God and the people who know and follow God.

Verse 3 speaks of our flesh. Our flesh is something we have to battle with daily. When we are following the course of the world, we live in the passions of our flesh. Our pleasure becomes more important than pleasing God.

The good news however is that you aren't the only one who struggles. We are all in the same boat...we've all sinned and no one likes others telling us how to live. We as sinners are children of wrath...but the God whom we offend shows up in a radically extravagant way.

BUT GOD....

This God that we offend is rich in mercy. He loves with a great love that demonstrates itself...even when we were alienated and living apart from him...God took initiative. We cannot find the same love in another human being or in anything else in this world.

We were dead, but God breathed his breath of life into us and made us alive in him. We went from darkness and death to light and life. God did something...we couldn't do anything apart from his love. People spend so much time and money trying to find something to fill the void in their lives. Just remember that there is hope and joy in God. It's not about you...you don't have to perform well or try to earn affection. God loves you even when you are dead in your sin. Good behavior doesn't mean a good report card with God. We bring nothing to the table with God. God has done everything for you.

Remember who you were...and remember what God has done. His love is extravagant and nothing can compare.

Your Love Is Extravagant
by Casting Crowns
Your love is extravagant
Your friendship, it is intimate
I feel like moving to the rhythm of Your grace
Your fragrance is intoxicating in our secret place
Your love is extravagant

Spread wide in the arms of Christ is the love that covers sin
No greater love have I ever known You considered me a friend
Capture my heart again

Spread wide in the arms of Christ is the love that covers sin
No greater love have I ever known; You considered me a friend

Capture my heart again
Your love is extravagant
Your friendship, it is intimate

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