I know your deeds and your toil and perseverance, and that you cannot tolerate evil men, and you put to the test those who call themselves apostles, and they are not, and you found them to be false; and you have perseverance and have endured for My name’s sake, and have not grown weary. But I have this against you, that you have left your first love. Therefore remember from where you have fallen, and repent and do the deeds you did at first; or else I am coming to you and will remove your lampstand out of its place—unless you repent. Revelation 2:2-5
When I first understood and accepted the message and person of Jesus, my relationship with God was based on love. I let God love me, received what Jesus had done for me, and returned that love by following His example and commands. The believers in Ephesus had a similar start. Maybe we all do. But, at this moment their relationship with God was characterized by intolerance for evil (that’s really good), testing the teaching of men and discerning, the truth (that’s really good). They had endured suffering and continued to do the work of God with perseverance (that’s really good, too!) But, the love had faded, they had fallen. As good as all of the other stuff was, the primary thing is the love exchange with God. It’s central. It’s essential. It’s paramount. As the apostle Paul would write in Galatians- the only thing that matters is faith expressing itself in love.
In my contention for the truth, confronting evil, and serving God… have I lost or left my first love- Him!? How can I revel in the love of God today? How might I express my affection for Him and others?
God, as this day begins- I am glad for corporate worship, singing songs of praise that tell of Your great love. Help me return from where I have fallen, to a love relationship with You. Thank you for seeing me, saving me, hearing my cries, revealing Yourself to me, and coming to live inside. I turn from myself to You today. I turn from my sin, to Your holy ways. I receive Your love. Fill me with Your Spirit again.