14th February 2014

Restorative Love

..do the things you did at first…”

Revelation 2:5  (NIV UK)

The German Christian writer, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who was killed during the Second World War for adhering to his faith, wrote about how hard it is to be separate from someone you love: “the more beautiful and full the remembrances, the more difficult the separation” (from the Cost of Discipleship).

Bonhoeffer’s thought is that we need to create memories of togetherness as a foundation for lasting love. He knew that loving relationships are the result of an investment in time and energy.

When he wrote Revelation, the Apostle John was concerned that the Ephesian Christians had forgotten their initial togetherness with Christ. They had lost “the first love”, the vision of what they once were in Christ and could be again. Therefore, he told them, in order to be restored, practice the good things you did when you first believed.

The same is true for us today when we are stale spiritually. Although God is always there for us, sometimes we feel that we have drifted away from him. Ask God for help. Engage in what we did at first: pray again, sing once more, read the Bible afresh, return to church, live like Jesus lived.

Sometimes we also need to refresh our human relationships. Maybe it is with our spouse, or with a friend, or with a family member. In marriage perhaps you remember the enthusiasm of first love. All the things you and your loved one did together, the laughter you shared, the closeness you felt, the joy and the exhilaration. If you feel you are drifting apart, “do the things you did at first”, is the message – not just those, of course: discover new things together.

With God’s help, let’s restore our broken relationships.


Father, thank you for your constant love towards me. Help me, please, to create good memories in my relationships with others, and to practice restorative love.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

Study by James Henderson


About the Author:
James Henderson is the National Ministry Leader for Grace Communion International in the UK and Ireland.  On the 1st February James is speaking in our Edinburgh and Glasgow churches. You are welcome to attend any of our local congregations.  For details of your nearest local congregation, check on our website, www.wcg.org.uk under the ‘Churches’ tab, or ring +44 (0)1858 437099.

Email:  admin@daybyday.org.uk


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