Today I’m welcoming my friend Wendy Blight to share from her new Bible study on 1 John, I Am Loved: Walking in the Fullness of God’s Love. Plus she’s giving away a copy to one of my readers below!
John wrote this letter, 1 John, to the church, to believers. He saw that many in the church were choosing to walk in disobedience, walking outside the freedom and fellowship they had gained at the cross. They were avoiding the light. Many immersing themselves deeper and deeper into sin and darkness.
I get it. I’m guilty of this. When I think certain thoughts, or behave in certain ways, hearing a sermon or reading my Bible can make me squirm. Why? Because light exposes darkness. The light of God’s Word exposes my bad behavior. It shines a light on what I desperately try to hide.
Living in the light requires that our hearts, our actions, our words, our thoughts, our values, and even our schedules align with God’s heart and His character, not with our sinful nature and fallen character.
Oh, how I fail at living in light … often. In fact, it happened smack in the middle of writing this study. Of course!
While writing this study, my husband and I took a trip to New York City. The second day found us stranded in a downpour near Central Park, blocks and blocks from our hotel. With everyone trying to escape the deluge, cabs were scarce. We ran into the closest store to wait it out. But the rain continued. We decided to go for it, running in and out of stores, jumping over and around puddles. Soaked from head to toe, my patience wore thin. My husband and I exchanged words. You see, I had suggested heading back as the first dark clouds rolled in. My husband disagreed and persuaded me to stick it out. So, “I told you so” hijacked my heart. My words grew harsher, as did his. And then, I stepped over the line. You may know that line. Part of me wanted to take them back. To grab his hand, look in his eyes and tell him how sorry I was. But the other side of me … the dark side … reasoned how valid my words were in response to his. Guess which side won out?
You guessed it!
We walked into our hotel room and sat in deafening silence. For hours, no words passed between us.
As I sat staring out the window, my eyes wandered to the bedside table. The light from the lamp illuminated my Bible. The words I’d been studying on light and darkness flooded my mind. Sorrow engulfed my heart. I walked over to my husband, touched his shoulder, peeked my head around his, looked in his eyes and asked for forgiveness. I thought it would be hard, but it wasn’t. The illumination of God’s Word penetrated my heart and melted it. My heart ached that my careless words had hurt my husband so deeply.
And although it took a few hours for my husband to fully surrender his hurt, he did. We enjoyed the rest of our time, experiencing the exciting sights and sounds of New York City, sans any more rain … or darkness!
Friend, we all sin. Every day. Many times a day.
Does that mean this whole light and dark thing creates a forever barrier with God? Can we ever have true fellowship? Can we ever stand in the presence of God fully comfortable, fully welcome?
Yes! Absolutely, yes! We can be comfortable in the presence of a holy God. John reminded us of this in verse 7 when he said the blood of Jesus purifies us from all unrighteousness. You see, God doesn’t require sinlessness … in fact, that’s impossible. Only Jesus is sinless.
God doesn’t require perfection. Only Jesus is perfect.
God simply asks for repentance. When we repent of our sins, He forgives us fully and completely.
I love The Voice translation of John’s words in our passage for today, “walk step by step in the light.”
It’s a daily walk. But, we don’t walk alone. We walk with a loving, forgiving Father who empowers us through His Holy Spirit. He invites us to walk in the light. And at times we may take a wrong step away from the light toward darkness. This misstep may interrupt our fellowship with God.
But, the good news is, we need only turn our hearts back toward our heavenly Father and ask forgiveness. He waits with open arms!
I Am Loved: Walking in the Fullness of God’s Love is for every woman who craves to truly understand, walk confidently in, and live out God’s unconditional, extravagant, lavish love because His love truly changes everything. Watch a sneak peek of the Bible study and download a sample week’s lesson for free here.
Comment below and one reader will win a copy of Wendy’s I Am Loved Bible study book and teaching DVD. U.S. Addresses only please. Winner will be announced here on Monday, March 26.
Click HERE to comment on the blog if you are reading this in email.
Wendy Blight is a wife, mother, author, Bible teacher, attorney, and writer for Proverbs 31 Ministry’s First 5 app. Her desire is to help every woman know with confidence she can tackle any problem life presents through God’s Word. Wendy is the author of I Am Loved, I Know His Name, and Living So That Bible studies, and Hidden Joy in a Dark Corner. She lives with her husband, Monty, in Charlotte, North Carolina and loves most when her two children, Lauren (24) and Bo (19), come home to visit and fill their home with lots of love and laughter!