At the church I attend our Pastor reminds us every Sunday that we need to be spending our weeks Loving God and Loving People. Every Sunday I go through in my mind "how am I showing love in my life?" It is very convicting to think on my week about the people that I have come into contact with and to evaluate if I have shown them the love that God has so graciously showed me. I am led to wonder this week, what does this kind of love look like in my life? Since I choose to be brutally honest with myself and with you I have to say there are two people in my life that I have deemed as unlovable in my mind. I want to explore with you how I am trying to over come that obstacle. Jesus' life was the ultimate display of loving those who are deemed unlovable, so much that it led him to walk daily with those people who were the extreme outcast of society. Jesus rolled with lepers, prostitutes, tax collectors and those that were considered the lowest of low. He showed them love by listening to them, he healed them, he taught them when no one else would talk to them. He even went as far as to touch them in their filth and heal them of their disease. Then as his life came to an end, he died for them. So what did they do for him to deserve this love? Did they give him lavish gifts? Did they serve him extravagant meals? Did they support his campaign financially? Did they donate to his cause? They did none of those things, they had nothing to offer Jesus. He simply loved them and gave his life for them. There are two main points I would like you to take away from today's blog. First, lets start with God's word:
1 John 4:9-12
By this the love of God was manifested in us, that God has sent His only begotten Son into the world so that we might live through Him. In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has beheld God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us
We do not have anything that we bring to the table here. It says here in 1 John that it is not that we loved God, but that he loved us. So if you are waiting until you have something to lay at his feet stop! He is not waiting for a lavish gift, or for you to have all of your affairs in order, for you to be a better person. You can never be good enough! It's not about that, it's about God's love for you. He brings all that is needed to the table, you need only join him by choosing to sit at the table with him. Secondly, the last verse says if we love one another, God abides in us and His love is perfected in us. We need to love each other. Not walking around saying "I love you", but showing each other love. The two people that I struggle loving have done horrible unthinkable things to me. I have allowed them to rob me of joy, to steal my love and to trample on my happiness. I must truly forgive them and then show them the greatest love which is sharing with them the love of God. The best way that we can show love is through sharing the story of God's great love for us. Doing this is the only way to be free from hate and choose love. Remember, God loved us when we were undeserving, dirty and unlovable. He laid down his life to show his love, can we not lay down our own feelings and hurt to show love? Let's work on this together this week! Who do you need to love? Is it that co-worker who drives you crazy? Is it the awkward boy at school that no one talks to? Taking a meal to a sick neighbor? Do you have someone who abused you in your past that you need to forgive and through that forgiveness be free to love and receive love? Think about who you can show love to this week so that God can abide in you and thus free you from your own chains.
If you do not know of God's love, if you have not joined him at his table yet. Let me encourage you to do so. Remember, he's not waiting for you to become perfect to accept you. He already accepts you and will make you clean and whole again if you would only just lay it all down and follow him. Please let me know if I can help you through this process in your life. I am praying for you!
My sweet friends, I pray that God's love will overflow from you this week onto all of those people that you come in contact with. Don't forget that you are Beautifully and Wonderfully Made in His perfect image and He loves us more than we could ever deserve!