“Chicken and Waffles: Love Ain’t Fair”

Love Ain’t Fair
Key Points:
-We are created to be better together.
-We get better together when giving our best to others.
Three Greek words of Love in the Bible:
Eros (sensual or erotic) – You for me. Phileo (friendship or brotherly) – You with me. Agape (sacrifical) – Me for you
I’m most blessed when I give my best to the guest.
Its easy to give my best when I know God’s got my back.
Further Conversation
1. What is your favorite food pairing or combo, such as PB&J? Why?
2. Read John 13:34-35 Why do we so often try to convince people about Jesus with our words when Jesus said love is the proof?
3. How would you define Eros, Phileo, and Agape love? Share where you most commonly experience each type?
4. Read 1 John 4:16 & Ephesians 5:1-2 What does it mean to you that John says God is “agape” love? How can we imitate that?
5. Read Philippians 2:5-11 How did Jesus empty himself for us? What are some ways we “empty ourselves” for others?
6. When does it get hard for you to give “agape” love? What do you want in return for your love? What does God wants for his love?
7. Give the best to the guest. Where are you tempted to keep the best? Where is it hard to trust God’s got our back? Who needs you to give your best for them today? How will you do it?
Daily Devotions: Go Deeper this Week
Monday – Philippians 2:1-11
Its hard to believe Jesus did what he did. He willingly went from King of Kings to criminal on cross. When everyone should have served him, he served everyone else. He emptied himself for our sake, giving his life for our benefit. Jesus says “my commandment is for you to love others like I loved you” Jesus set the bar high and defined love by how we give, not what we get. Paul challenges us to really follow Jesus’ footsteps and his example. Our unity, our better together, hinges on this sacrificial, giving not getting, attitude and action of love. How would you grade your love toward others? How Jesus-like are you? Its hard to trust God and love sacrificially. Look at how God took care of Jesus. Let that be your guide, trusting that if you empty yourself for others, God will fill (Just like Jesus).
Pray: Heavenly Father, its hard to sacrificially love, to give and give without regard to getting. Help me trust you and love like Jesus.
Tuesday – 1 John 4:7-21
The Beatles sang “all you need is love.” They weren’t terribly far off. God is love. And God is all we need! Love is living in God and God living in them. But we must pause a minute and get some clarity on what love means. I can’t speak for the Beatles, but this passage in 1 John clearly defines love as sacrificial, giving not getting, love. Jesus gave and gave, even giving his life. God is sacrificial love. Our better together only happens when we are loving like God. Who do you need to love today without getting anything in return? How and who can you love more like the love God is? Its what we need!
Pray: LORD Jesus, you showed God’s love perfectly as you gave all you are for our benefit. Help me love others the same way!
Wednesday – John 13:34-35
The world is always looking for proof of God. Scientists comb the facts, claiming evidence either for or against the existence of God. We find tiny miracles in pieces of toast that kinda look like Jesus. We are convinced we see signs in our culture. We build museums to how God created. But really, Jesus tells us we need only one thing. We need to love like Jesus. There will never be enough evidence to prove God exists. Arguments won’t work. But I can show you God exists by how I love. Jesus says our love will be the proof we are his disciples. Our love is far more convincing than any argument. Who needs to see God…in you?
Pray: God of love, the world needs to see you. The world needs to know you exist. Help me love like you, that they see you in me.
Thursday – Ephesians 5:21-6:9
Love is practical to every aspect of our lives. When Paul wrote these words, they would have caused controversy. They still do today. Our culture does not like the idea of ‘women submitting to their husbands.’ In Paul’s day, the challenge would have been ‘men loving wives like Jesus…sacrificially.’ The controversy is the same: no one whats to submit and serve. Paul (and Peter in 1 Peter 3:1-7) give us the secret to a great relationships, whether marriage, parenting or even employment. The secret is submission, placing the needs of others above your own. Instead of fighting for my rights, I submit my desires for your needs. What does love look like? Submission. It will make your marriage, your family, even your office a great place to be.
Pray: Almighty God, submission is such a strange idea in our world today. Help me trust you and submit myself for the benefit of others.
Friday – 1 Peter 3:8-12
Life is better together. We were made to live life connected with others in authentic, loving community. It sounds too good to be true, like an unattainable fairytale. We sing songs about love. We preach tolerance. But the world we live in is full of hate, brokenness, and isolation. We have 1000’s of facebook friends but no one really knows us. How is it possible to live life better together? Peter gives us the plan. Love like Jesus. Empathize. Put the needs of others above your own. Forgive. Be gentle and tender-hearted. Do good. The list is simple. Its not rocket science. And honestly, I don’t need someone else for me to obey it myself. I have a choice. Whether you hate and hurt me, I can forgive…I can love…I can empathize. We can have the authentic, loving community God offers. We just have to quit waiting on others to make it happen, and start living it ourselves.
Pray: Holy Spirit, help me choose to love like Jesus, empathize, be kind, and do good…not matter what others do to me. Begin with me.
Saturday – Matthew 5:23-24
Sunday worship happens tomorrow. I hope and pray God moves in a powerful way. I long to see the Holy Spirit spark a massive revival where our community changes radically as Christ is received and lived. Wow, would that be awesome if it started tomorrow. We can have great worship, powerful worship, life changing worship. But it begins when we first make it right with others. Jesus challenges us that we need to forgive and ask forgiveness before we can really worship. What is holding you back? Who do you need to make it right with before you can really worship and connect with God?
Pray: Loving God, help our church be so full of love for you and love for others that our town takes notice. We want to glorify you!