Love Feast Day #1

happybirthday!Welcome to the Get Lost Online Love Feast designed to help you feast on the love of God for ten days in an effort to overcome the angst of craving a guy!

Each day I’ll post worship music to focus your heart, a key Bible verse, and a prayer to pray just prior to a short devotional that’ll bring your heart to the banqueting table of God for a fulfilling and relevant teaching on what your heart truly craves! (Each of these is an excerpt from a love feast chapter in Get Lost: A Girl’s Guide To True Love where you can have the full experience. )

Today we’re going to get lost in His Presence! Recently author Francis Chan has called him the “forgotten God.” He is the Holy Spirit. Have you ever felt like he passed you up and gave all the “bells and whistles” to some other girl? Do you struggle to hear him speak to you? Lean in for a moment and feel your heart drawing near as I guide you to His Presence.

Get Lost in His Presence • Surrendering to Agape

Focus your heart in worship by listening to this song:
“How He Loves” by Kim Walker 

Gain heart focus by praying Scripture out loud:

O God, You love me. Help me to believe that today. I want to be as sure as Paul was when he wrote that no power can separate me from Your love. Not life. Not death. Not angels or rulers or things happening right now or things yet to happen. No height and no depth can put me beyond the reach of Your love! Nothing in creation can separate me from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus my Lord. (Adapted from Romans 8:37–39)

God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
Romans 5:5

Peter had a hard time loving Jesus.

And others.

He followed the Messiah as long as he wasn’t asked to do anything outside his comfort zone. But when things got risky, he was outta there. Because his love for Christ was self-focused, he forsook the Savior in His deepest hour of need (Matthew 26:56). Three times he denied Christ.

But Jesus’s love was the stuff of self-sacrifice. Agape. After He gave His very life for Peter and rose from the grave, He gave the apostle another chance.33 As if He were giving Peter an opportunity to erase those three denials, He asked him three times, “Do you love me?” The conversation went like this:

Jesus: Do you agape Me more than these?

Peter: Yes, Lord. You know that I phileo You.

Well, he’s gutsy! I’ll give him that. All he can muster up for the One who just died for him is a little bit of phileo, which is brotherly love, a poor substitute for the self-sacrificing, all-consuming agape Jesus is requesting.

Jesus: Feed my lambs. [Translation: “Get over yourself, Peter! Start thinking of others.”]

I imagine a long pause and a deep breath before the Savior tries again.

Jesus: Do you agape Me?

Peter: Yes, Lord, You know that I phileo You.

Really? Again? (Remember, in the original Greek language the difference here is not subtle.)

Jesus: Tend to My sheep.

Another long pause. Perhaps the Savior sighs. Then Jesus lets Peter know that He’ll take whatever kind of love the man is capable of giving. He lets the love-malnourished apostle define the conversation.

Jesus: (All right.) Peter, do you phileo Me?

Peter: [Perhaps spoken with relief.] Lord, You know everything. You know that I phileo You.

Peter is not able to offer anything more than friendship. No self-sacrifice.

Then comes the Holy Spirit.

Some days later, after Jesus has ascended into heaven, we find Peter and eleven other followers of Christ gathered together in a room on the second floor of a house. They become so full of God’s Spirit that they speak foreign languages and are accused of being drunk. A massive crowd gathers. Things are getting tense. In this dangerous and uncomfortable moment, will Peter take his brotherly love and hide as he has before?

Nope.

“Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted his voice and addressed them” (Acts 2:14).

New boldness.

Risk.

“Give ear to my words,” he says, encouraging them to listen carefully, and preaches the good news of Christ’s agape so profoundly that three thousand from the mob confess to believing Christ is the Son of the Living God (Acts 2:14–41).

Peter had fed his first flock of sheep. Just as Jesus asked.

Why?

What changed a coward into a cornerstone of the faith?

Agape.

Filled with the Spirit, Peter had gotten over himself and was consumed with the agape love of God.

That’s the kind of love that Jesus invites you to surrender to today.

Do you love Him?

If you’re not sure, maybe you need more of God’s Spirit.

Do you feel uncomfortable with what I’m suggesting? Are you possibly even afraid of exploring your relationship with the Holy Spirit? Why would you be afraid of an intimate experience with the God who loves you?

Some are afraid of what God might ask them to give up if they yield to the Spirit. A boyfriend? Their music? The popular crowd? Others, like Peter, are afraid of what God might ask them to do. Move to Africa? Start a Bible study at school? Wake up earlier to spend time with Him?

But I really think the greatest fear about the Holy Spirit is rooted in a misrepresentation of who He is and what He does in our lives. This grieves me, so let me see if I can help you erase the fear and get on with the filling.

Recently a girl described to me her lack of confidence concerning the Holy Spirit. “I just don’t feel like I hear His voice and sense His presence,” she said.

“Why?” I asked.

“Toni.” As she spoke the name of another girl in her church group, her tone revealed a sense of inferiority. “She hears Him all the time and so strongly. There seem to be so many bells and whistles in her faith!”

“Ah,” I said. “I think I can help.”

Toni (not her real name) frequently hears God’s voice and always tells everyone. She gets butterflies during worship and sometimes has to lie down because, as she says, “His presence is so heavy in the room.” She sees visions that she’s “supposed” to share with people. God tells her who to date, and even tells her who others in her class should date. Though I believe a lot of what Toni experiences is authentic, she lacks maturity in how she communicates her spiritual encounters.

Experiencing “bells and whistles” is not necessarily the proof of the presence of God. First Corinthians 13:2 reads, “If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing” (nasb). Nothing. The bells and whistles are nothing without love. The greatest proof of His presence is agape, which is seen in self-denying acts of love, not boastful displays of power.

The presence of God’s Spirit in your life will not necessarily match the experience of someone else. I just love how The Message describes how the Holy Spirit manifests in each of us in Galatians 5:25–26:

Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives. That means we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original.

The Spirit is a creative romantic and will arouse you in ways that are to be known only by you. He may touch you with a unique spiritual gift or give you wisdom that could come only from Him. Without a doubt, spending time in the presence of the Holy Spirit will change you in unexpected ways. But I guarantee this manifestation: you will always get agape when you get the Spirit.

Write Your Story

Leave a comment below expressing your desire to surrender to agape. Ask God to fill you with the Holy Spirit. Confess any fears you have. You may experience Him in obvious ways. You may not. Either way, starting today, make yourself available for His filling every chance you get. That’s all I ask—that you be willing.

For a talk-show meet’s video-style video of me and some of my favorite girls talking about today’s Love Feast, watch this video.

This is a partial excerpt of Get Lost: A Girl’s Guide To True Love (Chapter 7). I’m happy to provide this as a gift as you join us for the ten day love feast. For the full text of Day One of the Love Feast, you need a copy of Get Lost.

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13 Comments

  • I want him he is great he is all i need not some dumb boy . God I as you today to fill me with the Holy Spirit i ask that you guide me through each day as you want me to not as i want to you are an awesome God i thank you for helping me through tough times.

  • So i have this friend that was what they call “talking ” And a few weeks later i found out she was sending bad pics to him if you know what i mean i did not say anything to her and then i found out that the guy was sending her pics to people in 7th and 6th grade and the the school found out the boy was arrested for pornography and the girl was suspended from school for the rest of the year.

    My fear is that stuff like this is becoming more common in my age group like 12-18 years old .

    • It is becoming more common. And the consequences are nothing to mess around with. There are not any laws in most states specific to sexting so often the law that has to be applied is in regard to sex photos of minors or pedophilia for which there are very strong legal consequences. That sounds like what your friend is facing. Stay away from sexting!

  • I have a longing for God’s agape love and a desire to know that as long as I have that I am ok.I open myself to the Holy spirit and will be open to listening to it and receiving what it offers

  • Holy Spirit you are welcome here!! Please fill me and help me surrender to God’s agape love. I definitely cannot do it on my own! And sometimes my fear of what You may ask me to give up gets in the way of that ultimate fulfillment. Help me to trust You because I know You want what’s best for me! Anything I may be asked to give up or let You take control over is going to bring me that much closer to You, my amazing God and Savior. Give me a willing heart Lord. Shape me into Your girl!

  • Really im only doing this because my mom is making me but I do have a question about faith. If God is so great then why did he allow for things like the holocaust, rape, and “natural” disasters. Sometimes I feel like I just know exactly what to say when I get asked questions about God and I know the meaning behind them I just cant quite be satisfied with them. I was told God allows for these things to happen out of Love but really did he allow for that poor girl to raped until she was 18, where was the Love in that? These are just a few samples of the things I really struggle with.

    • God’s love compelled him to create humans with something called “free will.” That is we have freedom to love him and freedom to deny him. We have freedom to obey him and freedom to rebel against him. Things like holocaust and rape are an example where someone’s free will harmed another human terribly. That is so wrong. God did not desire for holocaust or rape, but he desired to create humanity with the freedom to choose. He didn’t create an army of robots with no choice. When it comes to things like natural disasters, God’s soveriegnty is hard to understand. I admit, I struggle with it too sometimes, friend. I’m currently studying the book in the Bible called Zephaniah. In it, Zephaniah writes that a hard time is coming for the nation of Judah. It will be painful. But the purpose of it is to make the nation turn back to God. To call on him. Ultimately, God wants us to be with him eternally and wants us to call on him so we can experience that. Maybe the next time you feel helpless or hopeless, you can call on him. Just see what happens. Even if your mom made you, I’m glad you’re here!

  • When I was five I gave my life to Jesus! At 8 I started pushing God to the side
    I didn’t put Him first!! In fifth and sixth grade he showed me tons! I was bullied a lot and I was really shy I thought I was ugly and no one cared about me!! Now I really wanna put God first in everything and Him with Agape love everyday!!! I need help and I need God!!

  • I would love to surrender to agape. Jesus is the best thing that has ever happened to me, but the truth is that I’m not really sure if I would sacrifice everything I have for Him. It’s just so hard surrendering some areas of my life to Him, especially my music. I have a deep love for music, and surrendering some worldy songs to Him seems just impossible some times. I pray to Him to free me from this, but it doesn’t matter what I do or how hard I work to avoid worldy music,I always finish where I started.

    • Clarabella, invite him INTO the music. Tell him your struggle and sit down with the song and sing it with him, for him, to him. Let him mold your heart.

  • I want to know the love of God through the work of the Holy Spirit in my heart. I know God loves me – I’ve known that all my life – but it’s the personalization of that and how that is my bedrock that sometimes escapes me. I want to have agape (self-sacrificing) love for God and not just look to my feelings of phileo (brotherly) love for God for fulfillment. Knowing He loves me needs to be enough, whether anyone else does or not. My fear is staying connected with God, not just going about my life without living out my love for God.

  • I would love to be able to surrender to agape. It’s just hard with the fact that God has this never-ending love for me and I feel like I can never reply back to him with that. My fear is that I will never be bold enough to proclaim his love as I am meant to, and I will always feel like I am lacking love even though it has always been right in front of me. I hope to be able to put more effort into my love for Him, instead of always leaving God as a back-up plan.

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