And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. But the one who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed throughout the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. Matt. 24:12-14
I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Rev. 2:4
This is what the Lord says: “I remember the devotion of your youth, how as a bride you loved me” Jer. 2:1
Dear Lord Jesus, I take this warning about the cooling of affections for you very seriously. I know that until you glorify the heart that beats within my breast, I remain a weak man, in constant need of renewing grace. I do love you, but I am also quite capable of misplacing my love—of loving other things and people more than you. Have mercy me, Oh most glorious and gracious Savior and Lord.
The last line of the hymn, “O Sacred Head Now Wounded,” expresses the sentiments of my heart: “Should I fainting be, Lord, let me never, never outlive my love for thee.” That’s my earnest, impassioned prayer, Jesus. I don’t fear losing my salvation. I will stand firm to the end because of my standing in grace. But what could be worse than for my love for you to cool down, degree by degree, as I get older? Don’t let that happen to me, Jesus. Don’t let that happen. What could be worse than to finish the race with an ingrown, icy heart?
I do not and will not trust in my love for you, but only in your love for me. I love you, Lord Jesus, because you first loved me and gave yourself as a sacrifice of atonement—as a judgment-exhausting propitiation for my sins. And now it is impossible for you to love me more than you do right now, and you are committed to never loving me less. Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
Holy Spirit, breathe upon the embers of my heart and rekindle the love I first had for Jesus when the gospel of grace was first applied to my heart, when nothing else mattered. Come, Holy Spirit, come in fire and power. Preach the gospel to my heart today—right now, as though it was the very first time. So very Amen I pray, expectantly, in Jesus’ kind and powerful name.