Let’s prepare ourselves for the new year – 2015. It’s hard to believe we have come this far; and yet there still seems to be something missing. Let’s look how we can complete ourselves as we move into this new year.
“The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief corner stone.” Psalms 118:22 (NASB)
We, human beings are made up of so many different talents and interests – some of us are administrative, some of us are builders, some of us our founders of ideas, some of us are educator, some of us our spiritual leaders, and some of us are leaders. Our world as it is today has been built by us – we have built this world from dreams and visions; and we have nurtured our world and savored it deep within us. Now the world of tomorrow lies before us – our minds and their spirituality is like the womb of the world. Our new year – 2015 – is awaiting us to give it birth and to tap into the great potential of God’s Good; and not only to tap into it, but to manifest it.
Now, 2014 may have left us a bit exhausted/fatigued. Are we ready for 2015?
Sometimes, we are adults who have worked and labored way too long. And sometimes were like little children have actually played too long. Right here in the middle of this amazing world, something seems to be undone/unfinished. We are searching for that something in order to complete it. Oh, we may have everything we need in our life, but we must admit that something is missing. There is something missing within us. Maybe, we overlooked something or rejected something – but should we have? What is it that we are searching for to manifest completeness. It’s necessary to discover that answer as we move into the new year.
That’s something we’re searching for is the greater part of our spirituality, and that something will complete our life and make us full – instead of almost empty. And that’s something is in Psalms 118:22. “The stone which the builders rejected has become the head of the corner.”
Now this Psalm is not just talking about a building. It’s talking about building our life, There is a building that all of humanity has been building, but they may have rejected a stone. We have our building up, and it looks complete, and yet we are going through our lives like something’s missing. We may feel incomplete in some way. We have not yet put the cornerstone in our building. Let’s continue with the Bible quote: “This is the Lord’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes. This is the day which the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.”
Now, let’s think about this. Is this the year that were going to put that missing stone in place and make our building complete? Our human growth is like the unfolding of a flower or the ripening of the fruit. Our human building may not be quite complete to enjoy the fullness of life – kind of like a kindergartner is not quite ready for college. The human spirit is in school for developing and learning for life. We are in the school of life; but maybe we are quite ready to take that advanced course.
So now in 2015, let’s be prepared for that wonderful, sweet, spiritual life that completes the entire building we have been working on since birth. Let’s get ready to complete the job of God’s creation – that job is us.
In her book, Only Believe, Sue Siking says, “The stone that the builders rejected; that stone is love. We need to put that stone into our life.” Jesus says the very same thing and in many different ways. He says, “Love is the fulfillment of the law of life.” Love is the greatest commandment of all. We are commanded to love. And if we receive love, how wonderful is that.
To love is your doctorate of spirituality. To be love and to be loving to all our neighbors is that last class, we must complete and pass with an A+ in order to find complete fulfillment.
“Love is the answer no matter what the question.”
So, as we begin this new year of 2015. Let us be resolved to be love – to be loving to everyone.
Love is the power that protects and keeps life in its true place. Love is becoming the cornerstone in all building toward a brand new world. Love must be the cornerstone as we enter in this new world. We are dawning the day of a new era. That spiritual era is love.”
In her book, Make Your Dreams Come True, Stella Terrill Mann says, “When we work against love, we’re going to run into the toils of the law of progressive good for all humans. It operates silently and all the time, and there’s no way to defeat it. It forever trips up the tyrant, the dictator, the violent, the selfish and the greedy. The law of the Lord is forever bringing to the affairs of the human back into the fold of the law of love.”
Dr. Carl Menninger of Topeka, Kansas once said, “Love is the medicine for the sickness of this world. All of us agree that love is the answer. We don’t create love for it is of God and it is already within us.” Love may be dormant within us, but make no mistake it is there for us to find and use. We can’t love God without loving each other. And humanity is a humanity of God.
Remember, each one of us has God within us – each one of us. If you love all even that cranky neighbor down the street, you are loving God. You are seeing through the eyes of love, thus you are seeing through the eyes of the one who created the commandment.
Once that final stone is put in place – into that corner, everything is in place and all differences fade away because you won’t see any differences anymore “In love there is no Jew, no Christian, no Buddhist no Muslim, or any other sect, or difference. We become one race, one religion, one transparent family of God, that fills every person with an invisible presence.” We may have differences, but we always have love.
There’s a great story about Archbishop Usher who was once shipwrecked off the coast of Ireland. “He was almost destitute of clothing and he wandered to the house of a clergyman seeking help. The clergyman who lived in Ireland was quite weary, somewhat cold and very suspicious. He said to the Archbishop, “How many commandments are there?” thinking he was detecting an impostor.
“I can at once satisfy you that I am not the ignorant imposter that you take me for,” replied the Archbishop. “There are eleven commandments.”
“No!” was the sneering reply. “There are but ten commandments in my Bible. Tell me where the eleventh is. If you can, I’ll give you all the help you need.”
“Well, there it is,” replied the Archbishop, “A new commandment I give unto you that ye love one another as I have loved you!”
How will 2015 be any different from 2014 if we don’t take on a new attitude spiritually?
Ephesians 5:1-2 says, “Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love.”
“Jesus Christ says that God is love. And if you are to be an imitator of God, you are to allow the Christ to take over your being. What does that mean? It means in your daily moment-to-moment activities with others, you are to be love. Therefore, we have to transfer limited human love and our concepts of that to the power of God’s love flowing through us.”
The number one way Jesus says to do that is through forgiveness. Now, forgiveness is release. We have to release self of our opinions of self. We have to release others. We have to release places and things of resentments of the past and go on. We have to take off the chains that have held us in bondage, and held others in bondage within our own mind. We must consent in the moment to allow God’s love to flow through us.
A wonderful thing has been said about forgiveness. “What you dislike in others, take time, instead, to correct in yourself.” Others are just a mirror. You’ll be too busy, then, to hold resentments.
To become the living manifestation of God’s love, you have to agree to never harm another person; first in thought and then in outer actions. There’s a Hindu word for living the harmless life. It is called “The Hensha.” If you live the harmless life, you could be called a person who is living a hensha. It is someone who walks in love and has committed themselves to God’s high expression.
Each of us truly desires to love God completely. You are not kidding yourself. You are not playing a game by sitting here. You are here because you want to be here. There are so many other places you could be. The thing you want to do more than anything is to love God with everything inside of you like never before. You want to love God more than last week or yesterday. You want to consent in such a way that God fills you today like no other time in your life. That is your prayer for today.
So many may say that they want to become more loving in some vague future time.
The undeniable dividing line between the old and the new lies in this new year date.
To love God completely, we have to express the love of God to all creation. We have to express unconditional love of God in all of our relationships. We will find that they are filling. As we express the love of God, we’re going to live in harmony with others. Jesus never withheld His love. And, from now on, we make a commitment never to withhold our love.
I’m going to read you I Corinthians 13. I read this often during our wonderful wedding ceremonies. I want to make this come alive for you, because it defines what love is.
This was something that was said as a man was preparing to marry a wonderful woman. He bought a ring for the girl and apologized that the ring wasn’t very big. The girl said, “It will be as big as we make it.” I like that. That will be the way God’s love is in your life. It will be as big as you make it.
Let me share some of this with you and let it come alive for you.
“If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal.”
We all speak with two tongues—the tongue of men which is condemning and criticizing—and the tongue of angels. We need to focus on the words of love that build and do not destroy.
“And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have and if I deliver my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.”
We could be so religious, like the Pharisees, that we could have memorized every word in the Bible. But unless we have love, we are not an effective Christian.
“Love is patient and kind; love is not jealous or boastful; it is not arrogant or rude. Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrong, but rejoices in the right. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all this, endures all things. Love never ends.”
The first ingredient of perfect love inside of you is patience. This is talking about how love inside of you won’t be in a hurry, a love that is willing to wait and ready when the time is right.
Second is kindness. Love is not only an emotion. It is also an action. Showing kindness is love in action, and that is our Savior and his teachings and his example.
Third is generosity. To be generous is to focus on the other person first and allow their actions to take the first place and allowing ours to take second.
The fourth ingredient is humility. That is, you do a loving act and then you put a seal on your lips and you don’t talk about it. Love hides even from itself.
The fifth is courtesy. This is love in action and the way we relate to others – treating them with the love and the manner in which Christ would treat them. Then we are welcomed in every place and in every situation.
The sixth is unselfishness. Mature love allows the others their personal freedom. It doesn’t question or demand answers. Love is not the happiness in getting; it is the true happiness in giving.
The seventh ingredient is good temper. In the Bible, it talks directly about having good temper. You can have a perfect person in every way, except for an easily ruffled, quick temper or a touchy disposition. So when do you feel your temper starting to build, try taking a deep breath and quote the 23rd Psalm or another song that bring you peace.
The eighth and ninth ingredients of love are guilessness and sincerity.
“Guilessness is the grace for suspicious people. We are very suspicious of a lot of people. Perhaps you are suspicious of your boss or an authority figure. This is not love. This is thinking the worst in your mind.” The damage is not the person; the damage is being done inside of you. It is a poison you are drinking daily. It’s very harmful. We have to have a feeling that always thinks the best of people that sees with the clear eyes of God. It will always be better than our suspicions. Then we have the serenity and the sincerity of the true purpose of God, and God’s truth.
Remember these words of the poet. It is about the lily that is on the breast of the rive.
“O marvel of beauty and grace,
Did you fall right down out of heaven; out of the highest place?”
And the reply of the lily, “Nay, I came not down from heaven.
None gave me my saintly white.
It grew slowly in the darkness out of the deepest night.
From the ooze and the slime of the river, I won my beauty and grace.
Great souls fall not, my poet. They rise to the highest place.”
We have all had troubles in our lives. We have all had vast amounts of time when we haven’t lived up to our potential as children of God and have not been loving. But that has been the building without the cornerstone. This year, 2015, you place that cornerstone in the building of your life. You complete the building. And you live in that building from now on.
Finding the missing piece to complete your lives is not just a feeling. It is created by a decision inside of you. It is love that will break through like spring flowers break through the most frozen ground. It will create a landmark of love from each of us to and for all of humanity. It will create the cornerstone of your life.
Happy New Year. God bless you!!
“The LORD bless thee, and keep thee: The LORD make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee: The LORD lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.” Numbers 6:24-26