The Bible talks a lot about love. God is love. As Christians, we are called to love our neighbors as ourselves. We are instructed to love even our enemies. But most importantly, we are called to love God. For He is, in fact, our “first love.”
Who is Your “First Love?”
When you think of your “first love,” you may think of your earthly father or mother or your high school girlfriend or boyfriend. However, Scripture makes it clear that, as Christians, our “first love” is Christ. When a person first gives their life to Jesus and accepts Him as their Savior, they become a child of God and experience the delight of their “first love.” Unfortunately, throughout life, many Christians fall away from Jesus.
What Does it Mean to Fall Away From Your “First Love?”
When a follower of Christ “falls away,” it is oftentimes a result of gradual sin. It doesn’t happen all at once. Instead, little by little, a person stops relying on God for their needs and desires. They begin to follow the ways of the world and try to take matters into their own hands. Whether it is because their trust in God has been shaken or the ways of the world seem more fun and appealing, they leave their “first love” behind.
This is addressed in Revelation 2:4-5 when Jesus says, “Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. Consider how far you have fallen! Repent and do the things you did at first. If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place.”
How to Return to Your “First Love?”
It is important to note that even if we walk away from God, He never leaves us. Through our sin and wrongdoings, He stays near, always ready to welcome us back with open arms. If you’ve fallen away from Jesus, you may now be wondering how to return. Looking at the passage in Revelation, there are two key actions to take to return to your “first love.” First, you must repent. Second, you must “do the things you did at first.” Let’s take a look at how to do both of these things.
1. First Comes Repentance
Generally speaking, to repent is to acknowledge your wrongdoing, feel remorse for it, and ask God for forgiveness. In 2 Timothy, we find that true repentance is not something we can achieve on our own. God must grant it to you. Fortunately, God is full of grace and always willing to forgive those who repent of their sins and pray for forgiveness. True repentance, which enables us to find our way back to our “first love,” is a gift from God that He is ready and excited to give.
2. Then Comes the Action
Repentance wipes your slate clean. God extends grace and forgives your sins. What you do next is up to you. To fully return to your “first love,” you must walk away from your wrongdoing and “do the things you did at first.”
To do this, think back to when you first accepted Jesus into your life. How did you feel? Were you excited to serve Him? Did you find yourself constantly reading your Bible? Did you make going to church on Sunday a priority? Did you find ways to surround yourself with other believers and stay encouraged in your faith? Many believers are zealous in their walk with God when they first experience the true hope, joy, peace, and freedom that comes with becoming a Christ-follower.
But, for many, somewhere along the way, priorities get rearranged. And when Christ is no longer your top priority, it gets easier and easier to fall away from Him faster and faster. In order to find your way back to your “first love,” you have to take action and pray, read your Bible, go to church, give generously, and love selflessly. Make these things your first and top priority again.
It is important to note that it isn’t always wrongdoings that separate us from God. Busyness, even with good intentions, can create a huge gap between you and your “first love.” Your relationship with Christ should be your number one priority, over everything: over your family, friends, work, social life, and more. Nothing should come before God.
Boldly Proclaim Your “First Love” with Christian T-Shirts
There are many different ways to express your faith. One of the most fun ways is to wear Christian t-shirts. This way, you share your love for Jesus with everyone you pass by. If you’re ready to return to your “first love,” we are here to encourage you in your walk with God by providing unique apparel that keeps the focus on your top priority: Jesus. Find your favorite ways to express your faith today!