Read: Amos 1:1-3:15, Revelation 2:1-17, Psalm 129:1-8, Proverbs 29:19-20
But I have this complaint against you. You have lost your first love. Look how far you have fallen! Turn back to me and do the works you did at first. If you don’t repent, I will come and remove your lampstand from its place among the churches. (Revelation 2:4-5)
Relate: I went to a Christian school from kindergarten up to seventh grade. One of the disadvantages of being a student at a Christian school was that they had the right to spank you. As cruel as that sounds, it wasn’t the spanking at school that was so bad. I knew that they would never hit me too hard. They just didn’t have the will to force on me the discipline I needed. What was hard about those spankings was that they were required to inform my parents first. What that meant was that when I got home, I would get a real spanking when I faced the wrath of the father.
All of my many spankings in those years were unjust and the first of many happened when I was in kindergarten. I hit my best friend in the head with a house. They didn’t even try to investigate the matter. They never even bothered to ask me why I did it. The fact was, what I was doing was bringing justice. My best friend had the audacity to try and kiss my wife. Yes, I said wife. Yes, it was kindergarten. We had a wedding ceremony. I made her a ring and she cut my hair. My best friend was jealous. So I brought the house down on him.
React: As time goes by we tend to complicate things. As we mature and become more intelligent things should get easier (I don’t even have any more hair to cut) but instead we over think and over analyze and generally make a mess of it all. Coming to Christ should be simple. Do I still love Him as much as I did as a young child? Why not? Do I have the same simple faith that I did back then? Why not? Do I still believe in miracles? Am I still amazed by His love?
Like the church in Ephesus I can say I have worked hard in my walk with Christ. I have been faithful. I have pursued holiness. I have held tightly to sound doctrine. I have not quit. But where is my love? Where is the love of a kid staying up all night trying to read his way through Leviticus? Where is that kid, when he found out one of the guys on his baseball team didn’t believe in God asked, “why not, are you crazy?” Then he pestered him (and daily prayed for him) until the poor teammate relented and said the sinners prayer. What will it take to get me back to a childlike faith? What will it take to bring back a simple love that nothing, not even a spanking can interfere with?
God, I love You. Help me to love You more. Help me to love You like I did as a child.