"The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, to proclaim the year of the LORD's favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, and provide for those who grieve in Zion — to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair."~from ISAIAH 61 Bible verse for this Blog

APOLOGY to READERS who followed a SEARCH to HERE & didn't find it

On July 18, 2017, I drafted almost 3000 blog posts that I had published since 2008 when I began blogging, rather than edit each one. So if you clicked here from somewhere else and ended up with the post unavailable or error, I am sorry but this is why. It'd be too much work for me to go back and fix them. There's an explanation on 7/19/17 as I'm still learning.

Sunday, December 19, 2021


is the most important thing we do!"

However, since God is ever-present, but not physically present in human form (any longer) on this earth {we did not do too well when He was} ... and even though we are to Love God first with our whole being (our heart, our soul, our mind) - the first & greatest commandment (Matthew 22:37-38) (Mark 12:30) Jesus added a second (in Mark 12:31) "to love our neighbor as ourselves", a tangible way that we show God our love for Him is in how we love our neighbor (& self) expressed in our affinity for kindness, patience, gentleness etc. in relations with others (our neighbors & toward ourselves). 

Because God is love, we should love each other, showing that love to others {as we would like it shown to us} also demonstrates that God lives in us, acknowledging that love that Jesus Christ came and was willing to be obedient to death to express His love. Now that kind of LOVE takes alot of STRENGTH. When another person is difficult to love, whatever our personal reason or difference is ... we all know it takes STRENGTH to continue to love or love them despite the personal conflict or difference. {I think you get my point} Easy to love God or at least say that we do, because it cannot be proven, except it is proven (shown) in how we obey & love one another {not just tolerate or avoid trying}- which takes "LOVING GOD with all our STRENGTH". Letting God live through us and His kind of LOVE - AGAPE {not the other kinds of love: philea (empathy bond), storge (friend bond), eros (romantic love)} - Agape love is unconditional "God" love (1 Corinthians 13 kind of love). Reading this passage over many years has recently caused me to ponder & question, have I ever really LOVED like this - doing so would require Godly STRENGTH {not my own}. A LOVE that shows God's transformation of me, a change in not only my perspective & attitude but in my daily actions.{ouch} LOVE is not a present under a Christmas tree, measured by how great it is or just what we wanted; it's His Presence in us, shown and expressed by our LOVE unconditionally given just as Jesus gave to us so we give to others through Jesus Christ in us, and also by LOVING God with all our STRENGTH.

So what does it really mean to do something with all your STRENGTH? According to Robert J. Morgan, in his book "The Strength You Need" after giving a "major sporting competition" example of athletes  with all their strength, breaking records, their own & others, he states:

"To do something with all our strength implies intensity, sustained effort, and ongoing concentration." Robert J. Morgan, The Strength You Need
"THAT'S THE WAY We're to LOVE GOD ..."

which leads this circle right back to my beginning words

so if Jesus appeared as He did to Peter & asked you,

"Do you love Me?"
(3 times)

How might you respond?

He might look at you, how you're living, look around at your habits 
or environment or priorities 
or how you treat others

"Do you really love Me?"
(John 21:15-17)

[by the way, each time Jesus asked Peter, He told him "...then feed My sheep" - if I've got this right, so, in essence, that's what He is telling each of us this so once again how we do this is by showing love for others in tangible ways] I remember this vividly from our church's drama depiction for Easter/Resurrection "The Life Giver" in Jimmy & Carol Owens "The Witness" Musical in the Song "I Love You Lord"

God has given us His Holy Spirit to help us love and obey Him. If we LOVE GOD with all our STRENGTH, it more than likely will look like, we are on a mission to make God happy, please Him, show Him that we LOVE Him as He loved us, that we truly intend to do His will (not our own) with all our might - all our ability (that He has given us, within us) to the best of our individual capability, because HE is so worthy of ALL our undivided love! We must demonstrate our love for God by putting God first before everything and everyone else in life. And like us, He wants to be told often, "I love You!" so let Him know & say to Him daily how much you love Him! (Psalm 18:1). God wants us to acknowledge Him & His Name. By LOVING His Word, we are STRENGTHENED & nourished with the many promises He's given us & see that God blesses those who LOVE Him when we love God with all our STRENGTH. 

This Christmas, we can simply LOVE God with all our heart ... and all our STRENGTH & return to that fresh "first LOVE" that we encountered when we met God through Jesus Christ & see how that babe in a manger came to show His LOVE completely, dependent on His Father, for every thing, every day until His last & teach us how to LOVE God & Love one another and the privilege we have to be so LOVED! Now that brings STRENGTH ... to our weary souls - to our weighted hearts - to our overwhelmed, worrisome minds! God is LOVE & "God so LOVED the world (or individualize this by putting your name or someone's name) that He gave His only begotten Son (Jesus Christ) that whosoever (insert that name)  BELIEVES in Him (God, the Father, Son & Holy Spirit as One) and trust in Him (AMP) as Savior [so that that person: YOU, ME or inserted name] will not perish {cease to exist  * my own amplified} but have everlasting life." So much LOVE - undeserved - but by His aMazing Grace! "

We LOVE because He first LOVED us!
(1 John 4:19)

We can never LOVE God too much
but we can
Him better
in our daily walk with Him
in our adoration and devotion to Him
in our obedience, in our daily conversations
with Him (and others)
by hating evil and helping other people
"to know, love & serve Him"
which in turn
will give us
so that we can go from
"strength to strength"
(Psalm 84:7 & 89:17)

In conclusion, there are many verses on LOVE and many on STRENGTH, but when I did a search for LOVE & STRENGTH the main one was this verse in Mark 12:30 & I would add 31 ... so as I LIGHT the CANDLE of LOVE on this 4th Week of Advent

 I will only link to the List of Bible Verses found:
  49 Bible Verses about Love and Strength

44 Verses about Strength & Love

Wishing you all 
God's aMazing
for a wonderful
Christ-filled CHRISTmas


 If you are one of the many weary souls seeking
still like me
I recommend
Robert J. Morgan's book
"The Strength You Need"
(and the other two I reviewed here in October)
so that you are filled by God's Word with these

  • Lifelong Strength: your strength will equal your days (Deuteronomy 33:25)
  • Lasting Strength: they go from strength to strength (Psalm 84:5-7)
  • Imparted Strength: the eyes of The Lord range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him (2 Chronicles 16:9)
  • Joyful Strength: the joy of The Lord is your strength (Nehemiah 8:10)
  • Timely Strength: God is our refuge and strength (Psalm 46:1)
  • Tranquil Strength: in quietness and trust is your strength (Isaiah 30:15)
  • Renewed Strength: those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength (Isaiah 40:31)
  • Recurring Strength: the Lord will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden (Isaiah 58:11)
  • Durable Strength: the Sovereign Lord is my strength; He makes my feet like the feet of a deer, He enables me to tread on the heights (Habakkuk 3:19)
  • Unwavering Strength: Abraham did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God (Romans 4:20)
  • Innermost Strength: I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being (Ephesians 3:16)
  • Riveting Strength: I can do all this through Him who gives me strength (Philippians 4:13)

{*I guess that}
 LOVE encompasses all these STRENGTHS
for God's LOVE is
Lasting, Lifelong, Imparted, Joyful, Timely,
Tranquil, Renewed, Recurring, Durable
Unwavering, Innermost, Riveting

* I write "I guess", because I did not find Mark 12:30 verse in these 12,
yet it is one of the 12 chapters of the 12 strategies in his book
and this is one of the book's 12 images on Morgan's website

Thank you Robert & Katrina Morgan!
Joel Osteen & Joyce Meyer
for your books that
impacted & influenced
my One Word journey on
Brian Simmons & Gretchen Rodriguez
for your book on Isaiah "The Vision" The Passion Translation,
Inspirational! I chose this for my 365 day devotional 
since my One Word Verse for 2021 is/was found in Isaiah 40
but your entire book continued to give me
to soar with eagle's wings
through 2021
and encouraged me daily
in our Lord Jesus & the STRENGTH I have in Him!

May I ask at this time that you would join me in prayer for the many who need God's STRENGTH in this season; whether from the battle with Covid or other health issues; loss of loved ones or loss of home from the horrendous effects of climate change & other factors; and for my own Strength & also a dearly loved one (very close to me, who is very private) who's just exhausted & awaiting medical results; and I'm sure there are others also exhausted after these trying years that we've been through and the ones ahead of us, that the LORD would strengthen us & direct our steps, keep us close to Him & bring healing in so many areas throughout this nation & this world! In Jesus' name ... there is power in His Name! Thank you! God bless! 

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