First loves are almost never forgotten. Even if it was nothing too special, that first love can still be recalled decades later. What about that first in love in Christ? Is that ever forgotten? Think back to the feelings you felt right after conversion. It’s joyful. It’s excited and energetic. Much like that feeling of first love with a boyfriend or girlfriend, the feeling that nothing is impossible and so much can be achieved is also felt when one falls for Christ and accepts Him as Savior and Lord.
Paul rejoices with the Ephesians when they were on this high feeling of first love in Christ: “For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better.”–Ephesians 1:15-17 (NIV)
However, something must have happened over the next 60-80 years when John writes about the church of Ephesus:
“I know your deeds, your hard work and your perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked men, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love. Remember the height from which 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.”–Revelation 2:2-5 (NIV)
Surprised? Doesn’t it happen to everyone? Eventually the excitement of that first love withers. Sparks die. New interests are found. This is what happened with the Ephesians. They started out with such excitement and after awhile their new interests made them forget about that passion and their first love.
It happens to all of us on a continual basis. Unless an effort is made to keep the passion alive, first love–even that first love for Christ–dies. Learn from the Ephesians. Don’t take faith for granted. Continue to pursue it. Continue to read the Bible, go to church and work toward knowing God more. The more you know of Him, the more you want to know. It is possible to never forget your first love.