Say, I have a question from the Shovelation. What does it mean to you that our "life is a miracle of faith operating through love"? How do we see this happen in our lives. My life seems to be void of much love.
For your life in Christ Jesus has nothing to do with what you do or what you don't do; instead, your life is a miracle of faith operating through love. Shovelation-Galatians 5:6
First off, I think we've learned to blind ourselves to the reality of love because of our religious expectations of what we think it ought to look like or the standards it ought to perform to. We have these mental, or should I say romantic, pictures or perceptions along with an ongoing inner commentary that keeps messing with reality. When everything seems to be going right (at least in our perceptions) we might assume we are the perfect picture of love, and then turn around and see nothing.
I've often heard people tell me in a short discussion that they are the most worthless person on the whole earth, and then when questioned will immediately turn around to defend their own worthiness. This comes from believing the lies - the same ones we hear all around us - that we repeat to ourselves.
This love is none other than the miraculous love of God that has been put within us by his spirit. And as it has nothing to do with what you do or don't do you could not generate it. The stuff we learned of in this world (religious or non-religious) as being love has only been a shadow of the true. It is the figs that ought to have been on the fig tree but never were (if you remember the story of Jesus cursing the fig tree).
If his life is in you then his love is there. This life is miraculous. Maybe you don't see it because you're expecting something else. Isn't that the same reason people - like you and I - did not recognize the son of God?
Secondly, from the same page, what do you think it means that the "whole system of doing is fulfilled by love." Does that mean our love? If so, how do we generate that kind of love?
The whole system of doing is the basic premise of law. The failure of law is that is does not work. Oh yeah, many have made great claims of temporary or partial fulfillment, but the simple fact that more rules, laws, motivational methods, promptings, pleadings, and demands keep being added all make it very clear that everybody knows that it's just not happening. Not really.
But then the love of God enters the picture. His love has been poured out within us through his spirit that indwells us. Love fulfills the whole system of doing because it cannot violate it in any way ... even though the religious mind may demand that it does. But please note, love does not fulfill law by setting out or determining to fulfill any particular demand of law, but only because of what is is in itself. It is the very heart and soul of God. The reality of grace exceeds the law itself as far as the heaven is above the earth.
I wonder if maybe you are struggling with the reality of this love because you have been trying to generate it and have judged yourself in view of not being able to do so.
How do you practically apply what you shared when you know you are supposed to love and be patient with, say your child, and it just plane irritates you what they are doing?
Perhaps your lack of patience and irritation with your child will teach you more about real love than you could possibly imagine. I don't suggest this as some hypothetical concept, for I remember having been pushed past my limit on many occasions while raising 3 girls ... especially the last one as she went through the whole drug and rebellious scene. Be real with your child, and especially don't be afraid to let on that you have problems dealing with him/her. Kids need to know that their parents really need Christ as their life.
How do we really gain a greater heart-felt grasp of the love of God that is within us?
I believe it comes through revelation ... but I also believe that it is happening even when we think nothing has been happening. The feelings we often desire are fleeting expressions of something that has been growing within us for long periods of time. God is pleased to reveal the something in the nothing and the exalted in the despised. Consider Christ.