Daily Devotionals

Greater Than Week 4 Tuesday

Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. 1 John 4:11

When I am at the beach sitting in the sun staring at the ocean, I really do not like wearing sunglasses. I wear them out of necessity, but my sunglasses affect my view of the ocean every time. They become an unwelcome filter, changing my view of the ocean’s color so that I can only see the ocean through the lenses of my sunglasses. I want to view the ocean unfiltered. While I do not prefer my sunglasses as a filter by which I view the ocean, there are other filters that I do prefer. For example, I do want to wear my contacts when I view the ocean. This understanding extends far beyond the sunglasses and contacts I wear. This extends to the decisions that we make. We must think about and make decisions with the right filter. Scripture teaches that when we make decisions, one of the filters we are to use is love.

John, one of Jesus’ disciples and a writer of several New Testament books, often spoke about the importance of letting love be our guide. This call to love extends to us as we make decisions as well. Here is what he wrote in 1 John 4: “Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other” (verse 11). This verse provides an important reminder. God has shown us love to the highest extent. As a result, it stands to reason that followers of Christ are to express that love.

When we love others around us, we also help others around us to experience the love of God. John continues to teach in 1 John 4, “No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and His love is brought to full expression in us” (verse 12). When followers of Christ love, they display a tangible expression of God’s love to a world that desperately needs to know it.

We read in John 13 that love is actually to be a defining character of followers of Christ. (verse 35). With this understanding, it stands to reason that when we need wisdom in decision-making, the lens of love is helpful and necessary for followers of Christ. As we make decisions, we must ask the following questions:

  • “What is the loving thing to do?”
  • “How can I show God’s love to others through this decision?”
  • “How can I express my love for God through this decision?”

As we ask these questions, we will find clarity and direction as we seek to make decisions that honor God.


If you have not already, make a list of the decisions you are making right now. After thinking about these decisions and writing them down, think about the decisions you must make through the lens of love. Ask the question that well-known pastor and author Andy Stanley encourages Christians to ask when making decisions, “What does love require of me?” Let the lens of love aid you as you seek to make wise decisions that honor Christ.


Read 1 John 4:7-21(NLT)

Dear friends, let us continue to love one another, for love comes from God. Anyone who loves is a child of God and knows God. But anyone who does not love does not know God, for God is love.

God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.

Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us.

And God has given us his Spirit as proof that we live in him and he in us. Furthermore, we have seen with our own eyes and now testify that the Father sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. All who declare that Jesus is the Son of God have God living in them, and they live in God. We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love.

God is love, and all who live in love live in God, and God lives in them. And as we live in God, our love grows more perfect. So we will not be afraid on the day of judgment, but we can face him with confidence because we live like Jesus here in this world.

Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love. We love each other because he loved us first.

If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a fellow believer, that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? And he has given us this command: Those who love God must also love their fellow believers.