It is by loving God that we are able to love people who disappoint us, who use us, who exploit us and who take advantage of us, according to Dr. Ike Butterworth, senior pastor at First Presbyterian Church in Wichita Falls, Texas Sunday.
"Most of us can only go so far in loving other people. If they treat us so badly that we feel they've stepped across the line, that's when we become distant. We feel they don't deserve our love," Butterworth further said.
One of the themes of Butterworth's message to a large crowd in the main sanctuary of the church was that God wants us as humans to find our pleasure in him.
He said further, "It is the chief end of man to enjoy God forever. God wants us to find our pleasure in Him. Our relationship with Him drives our love for others."
But Butterworth added it is up to us how good a relationship we develop with God.
"Your relationship with God causes you not to envy or to boast."
Another dramatic point Butterworth made was that, "We don't play to a crowd. We play to an audience of one. Our entire life is played out before God. He will make pronouncements on our lives."
Butterworth also said, "Every encounter that gets lodged in our lives is an opportunity for us to find our satisfaction in God instead of circumstances. When unlovely and unlovable people enter our lives God says we can show our love for Him by being patient with them and hope for the best for them. After all, the Bible says to love your enemies. Jesus loved us when we were his enemies while He was on the Cross. He entrusted Himself to Him who judges justly."
Butterworth continued his thought-provoking sermon by saying, "We should entrust ourselves to God rather than our own sly moves. We should entrust to God our outcome."
He also said, "We should entrust to God our trial, difficulties and inconveniences. He's in it to make us like Jesus."
Butterworth added to his presentation by saying, "God is committed to making your soul grand. It's a long, arduous journey to take up the Cross and love others by loving Him."
The sermon was based on the Book of l Corinthians, chapter 13 beginning with verse 1.
The heart of his sermon seemed to be that if we are not motivated by love then no matter what we do, it won't get us anywhere.
Readers may contact Dr. Butterworth at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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