Crazy Love Francis Chan
Chapter 1: Stop Praying
If you have read my recent post “Crazy Love Study” I announced I was going to read the devotional Crazy Love by Francis Chan and post my analysis and findings on my blog. I’ve also noticed I made a few past posts about the delightfully, infamous devotional by Francis Chan. So I will update them and use them as part of the series, as to not be redundant.
In this blog post, I review how knowing the different ways God expresses His love towards us, motivates us to trust Him in all things.
Crazy Love is primarily about how our love for God should encourage us to reach out to the unsaved and to bravely remove traditions from religion and live out Christ’s commands unhinged. This fiery passion, as the devotional reveals comes from understanding God’s love toward humanity is so powerful that when absorbed transforms mediocre Christians into zealous believers. Such love empowers virtures like righteousness and holiness, these fruits enables children of God to stamp out idols and cut out sins in our lives.
What makes God’s love in a word “crazy” is the lengths He went to bring us back to Him, after we failed Him, sinned against Him, and rejected Him.
In the first chapter of Crazy Love titled, “Stop and Think” Chan instructs the reader to stop and think about who God is. To take a nice, long hard look and remember the God we serve is the God of the universe. He is the one true God. The moment we see God, it should rouse the Christian spirit to worship God in light of His might, power, and glory.
What struck me during my quality time with the Lord is in the book, we’re instructed to watch this video, titled “Stop and Think.” In the video, Francis Chan the author and preacher explains the depths of God’s love. He describes how humanity fell short, how we’re all sinners and by God’s love we deserved death. In spite of the circumstances, God did not give up on us. He became Christ Jesus, God in the flesh (incarnate) to set us free from sin’s bondage.
As I was watching the video, what Chan spoke stood out to me. He says:
“There are people all across America right now that say, ‘Yeah I believe in God. Yeah I follow Him.’ And then you look at their lives and it doesn’t show. Jesus said, ‘…if you really knew you would obey my commands.’” Chan continues to say, “It’s this idea of trust saying you know what I trust this God, He’s done everything for my good. He’s given me life. He’s given me His laws. He’s given me forgiveness, so I believe His commands are gonna be for my good. And that will show by your lifestyle.”
Such a profound message. It struck my core like lightning, and I had to pause and listen again, and again to what Chan had said. Do I trust God? I am like thousands of Christians in America. I grew up in a Christian home. My parents are devout believers of Jesus Christ. I remember my mom teaching us about Christ at a young age, and knowing the stories of Daniel in the lions’ den, to King Saul’s murderous pursuit of David, to the fateful night of Jesus’ betrayal. Up to the past two years, I realized knowing is only half the battle. Trust is truly where it accounts, and your faith begins to manifest.
Yeah, I believe in God.
Yeah, I accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior of my life.
But do… I follow Him?
The best way to tell is to examine our lifestyle. Ask yourself: Does my lifestyle reveal my trust in God? Am’ I truly following Him as my mouth proclaims or is my lifestyle revealing how I have fallen short and complacent in my spiritual walk? Taking a quick assessment of 2018, I admit I failed more than I succeeded in surrendering myself entirely to God. 2018 was a cataclysmic year. As many times as I hit my low point, often made my bed in rockbottom–I also knew the Holy Spirit remained working in me and propelling to persevere. It was such a great deal of learning and letting go for me.
Now I can look at the scripture and the world with practically new eyes. I am not exactly seeing things for the first time, moreso understanding and accepting what the Lord desires to teach me. Most importantly, what the Lord God desires for me to learn about Him. I cannot have a marvelous year, if I do not trust God and I cannot trust God if I do not know Him. I believe this was definitely what held a lot of us in captivity in 2018. Many did not know God, others did not believe He was faithful, and all of us lacked being comsumed by the love of God. On the other hand, when we welcome God’s love, His love is what transforms us to be unafraid and bold.
In fact, loving God, believing your loved by God, trusting God, and knowing God are all factors in this spiritual metamorphsis formula. Furthermore, the most important knowledge any human shall ever acquire is truth about who the Lord God is. Knowing God is more than half the battle here on Earth. When I know God for myself, read, study, put into practice what the Bible teaches I receive wisdom in everyday situations. I get glimspses of what to expect from the world. I discern who to trust. I find security and rest, believing my God is far more capable than I will ever be.
When I truly know God I am more inclined to trust Him, instead of fearing my circumstances. I trust God; thereby, I step out on faith, I stand bold and courageous against the unknown.
Chapter One encourages believers to once again, to remember who God is! To recognize what He has done for us and how He is worthy of all our commitment and love and adoration. Francis Chan expresses some commendable points and these are reasons as to why we can definitely trust God this year!
- First, God’s plan of salvation was for our good. Romans 5:21 says, “21 God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” God’s salvation plan was for our good, both our eternal and internal good. If sin is in the way, then there is no way we can see God. God is Holy. God is righteous. We cannot expect a holy God to accept the wickedness of humanity. This is a monstrous crime in His eyes. God absolutely hates sin. Sin rebels against His Holy law and will. We like to call our evil actions anything but sin, because we’re selfish, entitled, and ignorant creatures. Little do we know, sin eats away at our souls, pulling us apart from the One being whose love and compassion fills the void in our souls. So how great, how humongous does God’s love have to be, for Him to willing give up His Son for our sake. Jesus Christ’s sacrifice was all apart of the big picture. Oh, Beloved, do you realize salvation cost God everything, and it costs us nothing? God did not have to look out for humanity. He gave up His Son for our good.
- Then, God has given us life through His Son, Jesus Christ. For it is written, “Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6) Jesus Christ is the way. He provided the way back to the Father. He is the bridge between fallen humanity and a holy God. He is the truth. He spoke the truth in His teachings on Earth and He is the culmination of every prophecy and law in the body. He is the life that by believing in Jesus, we are given eternal life, not by good works, being baptized or having spiritual gifts. No, Christ Jesus’ work on the cross alone has saved us. God did not stop at only crucifying sin, and making us righteous again in His sight. His plan also includes those who accepted Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior to spend the rest of eternity in happiness and joy with Him. How merciful is our God!
- Next, God has given us His precious law to protect us, revealing our need for Jesus. As I have written before on this blog, God’s law does not eliminate the joy or happiness in our life. God’s perfect law reflects His Holiness and His conformity to His righteous character. God’s precious law reveals our fallacies as Christians, where we fall short. At the same time, the law of the Lord creates a protective barrier or boundary around us. It’s like a fence, the law of the Lord stretches for miles and miles, restricting us about where we can go, who we can talk to, what we can do, and what we can say. God has put these constraints or this fence around us to keep us from indulging our freedom in the wrong things. So many of us act like we do not have regrets but sin has left its heinous mark in our pasts, and once we reconcile God’s perfect law with His perfect love for us. We then, embrace the grace He has provided us through His Son, Jesus. Psalms 19:8 says, “The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes.”
- Finally, God has forgiven us through Christ’s payment on the cross, even though we did not deserve a second chance. Always remember saints, Christ Jesus’ death is what allowed God to forgive us. If Christ Jesus did not die, then God’s justice would have been incomplete. Since God is Holy, then that means He must always execute justice and satisfy His wrath. Sin is a crime. An insult against God’s holiness and when we sin it breaks God’s law, so broken law equals punishment. The punishment mankind deserved was eternal separation from God to experience hell and torment, but God mercifully looked upon us. “23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23)
So, I implore you Beloved, my dearly loved friends who are redeemed through Christ Jesus’ blood, to trust God beyond a shadow of a doubt. Look at all the ways He loves you, adores you, and pursues you. Look at what He has done for us and see if you’re living a life of risk taking faith or a complacent, safe life? Review your 2018 year and see where you went astray.
Check out Francis Chan’s video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NnnSS0_-xoA
And ask the Holy Spirit to convict where you have fallen short, trust God in where your faith is weak, and above else, seek change where it is needed.
Be blessed! 🙂
Copyright © 2019 by A Meeting at the Well