Unfailing Love
Luann Prater

"What a man desires is unfailing love." Proverbs 19:22a (NIV)

"I LOVE this dress!" she exclaimed, "I simply throw it in the washer and it comes out looking new!" My friend was trying to convey to us just how necessary this garment had become in her closet. She "loved" it.

We use the word "love" so indiscriminately that often the true meaning of love gets lost. Or worn out from overuse. Today's key verse tells us that everyone desires love and not just any love, but unfailing love. One of the lessons I learned when I became an adult was the realization that things wear out and need to be replaced. At my first wedding (yes, I said first), I remember receiving several sets of towels. One wise older woman told me to tuck a set away to save for later. She was so right. After many washings and years of use they became my favorite rags. I needed to pull out another set because these failed to provide that warm-fuzzy you need when stepping out of the shower.

Is love like that? Does it just wear out or fall apart? I wondered.

For years, many things in my life fell apart. Moving every year when I was young caused loving friendships to fall apart. Loving family relationships were also fractured. And the very first sexual abuse I can remember was in second grade, then fourth grade, then by a church leader when I was 13. "Love" became a numb, meaningless word to me.

So my question became, "Where could unfailing love be found?" Does lasting love exist when everyone around me is falling in and out of what they call love? In 1 John 4:7 I found my answer, "Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God." The Greek word for "beloved" is agapetos, which means "dearly loved." The very first thing this verse tells us is that we are dearly loved by God. The second piece tells us we can love one another because of God's love.

The only way we can fill that gaping hole that needs unfailing love is to fall into the arms of our Everlasting Father. When the Bible tells us, "God is love," it is saying that without Him, we can only create temporary, fragile and indiscriminate love.

Our abilities are limited, but oh sweet sisters, we are daughters of the very God who IS love! He is the only one to turn to for unconditional, uncompromising, unfailing love. When we accept His love for us, then and only then, can we pour out true love onto others.

Dear Lord, how can we comprehend the love You have for us? There is nothing on earth that even comes close to it! Teach me to accept Your love and then shower others with the grace and love You have given me. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Do you know this Great Love?

The Wonder of His Love: A Journey into the Heart of God by Nancy Stafford

Broken into Beautiful: How God Restores the Wounded Heart by Gwen Smith

Visit with Luann on her blog and find out more about her new radio program “Encouragement Cafe with Luann & Friends.” Beginning Saturday May 30th from 2-3pm(EST) you can listen, laugh, learn and call in to share a cup of thoughts around a cozy table of friends. Listen online or find a station near you at www.wtru.com.

Application Steps:
Make a list of all the things that fall into the category, "I love…"

Have you tried to fill your need for unfailing love with anything on that list?

Write a prayer to God asking Him to replace your worn out list with His unfailing love.

What fills my love list?

How can I accept God's love for me?

Who around me needs His love to flow through me and to them?

Power Verses:
Romans 8:37-38, "No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (NIV)

1 Corinthians 13:8a, "Love never fails." (NIV)

© 2009 by Luann Prater. All rights reserved.

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Blogger Pryl said...

What beautiful words... this morning I thanked God for speaking to me so much lately through Scripture, through novels, and through Wendy's blog and the Daily Devotional.
Yesterday I had a rather unpleasant run in with a customer that I must continue to deal with. Admittedly, after saying many harsh words, I remembered to pray for her.
God tells us to love our enemies - and your devotional on love today is a reminder of that instruction as well.
Thank you, and may you have a lovely weekend.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is so hard today to truly know what love is because of television, and all of the other things that the enemy has come up with to blind us.
I had gotten to the point where I couldn't even say the words that I love you. Still today it is very hard for me to say it. I can respond if someone tells me that they love me, then I can, but me just flat out saying it. IT IS SO HARD!
It had failed me so! My father abused me in every way, and I mean every way! My mother hated me because of it, so she never protected me. My older sisters, resented me because of the things that they had to experience so they mistreated me. I began to get in relationships where I was abused sexually and physically which ended me in shelters. I got pregnant by 2 different men, who left me and the children. Then I found out that my last children father was in prison for sexually abusing someone. I got saved for a church(cult) to claim that they loved me, but when I confronted them about some things they vandalized my house so badly and tried to kill my children, and one of the members who left with me and moved in with me. Finally had to have a road block to prevent them from coming back. Went to another church and asked the pastor to pick me up to go to church, she wouldn't do it, to get married to an abusive husband who didn't love me. His sisters didn't like me because they were best friends to his children mother. So they mistreated me. To go to another church where the pastor was taking money and misusing it, and the people, mis preaching the word to the people to fit his plan, when I confronted him, he got upset, and his wife kicked us out. Went to another church and the pastor was doing the same thing. Didn't want us to fellowship with other churches, brain washing the members, I confronted her, and she kicked me out of her church.Lied on by preachers, and pastors. The list goes on and on. So, it took something from me. Love? What's that? Is what I often would say. But through all of these terrible circumstances there was someone who never left me, never changed, who comforted me, and continue loving me. JESUS!!! Because he lives, I know that I could and can face tomorrow, and learn how to love despite of no one loving me.!

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Praising God for His everlasting, unchanging, perfect love for us even though many Christians do not love once another through neglect because they are too busy or for whatever reason or because they allow satan to use them.

I pray that YOUR LOVE will continue to be clear to this woman who has been so unloved by others. I pray, Lord, that she will find true Christian love in the lives of other Christians.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just wrote a small email to my husband saying, quote from a song, "if loving you is wrong, I don't want to be right." coz he is cheating on me.

The everlasting love that heavenly father has for us is eternal, no one can snatch away from us. Dear Anonymous, I am praying for you today. Love you sister

Blogger KW said...

WOW! What a concept...unfailing love. Can we actually get a grasp of that thought? What an amazing God! I want to know and understand that love. And, yes, I want to fell that love. The God who knows me best, loves me the most. I believe this is a win-win situation.

I pray that you who do not know this God or His love, will now receive Him and His love. Take the invite now! Invite him in. He wants you to know Him and His love.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you. I needed this today. These verses. This lesson. I just had a friend, someone I've fallen in love with who is going through a really hard time right now and is having medical issues and it's causing anger issues. God is trying to get him back to the church. And He has used me to fulfill His purpose but just now, the anger was so strong I didn't know what to do or where to turn. I was talking to God and I swear He said Proverbs 31 Ministries. And so here I found myself and this helped. Thank you so much. PAB

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