Once a year, the young adults from the churches in Anaheim, Cypress and Orange meet together in the mountains to have a weekend of blending in the way of a conference. During this time, the brothers release a particular burden to the young adult saints. This year, gathered at Camp Engedi, we were able to be blessed with a conference entitled, “Loving the Lord with the First Love”. The total number of registrants was 178 adults, 71 children, 22 children serving ones, and 25 FTTA trainees.
Loving God is the base of our Christian life. As we sat before the Lord listening to His speaking, we saw that loving the Lord is much more than what we expect it to be. To love the Lord with the first love, the best love, is to give the Lord the preeminence, the first place, in all things, and to be constrained by His love. His constraining love causes us to care for His church as He cares for the church. As we care for the church, we must exercise love as the most excellent way for the building up of the church and practice prophesying as the most excellent gift for the building up of the church. But even with such excelling gift as prophesy, the apostle Paul writes that “without love, [he] is nothing” (1 Cor 13:2).
In relation to the burden of the God-Ordained Way, we see that the matter of practicing the God-Ordained Way is altogether dependent upon love as well. Just as the Triune God has loved us in eternity past and came to cherish us in love by sending His Son to die for the propitiation of our sins (1 John 4:10) and to nourish us as the life-giving Spirit, we also need to be those who are filled with God as love in order to cherish and nourish others. Only by God as love wrought into our being would we be able to carry out the God-Ordained Way.
The way presented before us is clear: we must take love as the most excellent way for the building up of the church. However, we cannot manufacture this love nor will it out of ourselves. Only God is love, and love is the essence of God’s being. By spending time to be infused with God are we are able to be filled with love. May the Lord burden us to be filled with love for the sake of His church. ( S.C.)