“Love”, a word that immediately raises emotions on one side or another; good or bad. The moment you hear the word, “love”, don’t you have people that mean the world to you personally come to mind? Don’t you have people come to mind that enable you to think, “I could never love that person”?
Let’s face it, some folks are easy to love. My mother-in-law is one of those people. She is always loving towards me, helpful, provides great advice and I really like her son with all my heart. My mother is just another one – she’s my mother and she instructed me to work hard and family is important. My husband, children and grandchildren, Aunts, Uncle and several friends all fit on my easy to appreciate list.
Now, we all have people in our lives that aren’t easy to love. A perplexing thing about love, in the sense of loving others, comes down to someone’s definition of love. For many people, when they think of “love”, it’s defined to include sexual relations. This definition has been a part of our society since the beginning of time.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful for the word love to always evoke Truth in everybody’s mind and heart? Truth, that everybody is created by the God of this Universe and is made in His image. And therefore, what we choose to do is contrary to what the world expects. Consider how the Lord instructs us regarding LOVE IN ACTION in Romans 12:
– Love has to be sincere ~ how often do you tell somebody you love them because it’s whats expected? Sincere? Maybe.
– Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. ~ Devotion? Honor others above yourself? Putting others first mechanically honors them. Sometimes I am really tired and would just like to sit and rest. An interruption almost always occurs about the time I get comfortable. I have never been sorry when I have gotten up to assist one of my children, grandchildren, or a friend that had to speak.
And, that God wants to listen to their heartfelt prayers. He wants to hear your love for Him and where you want His help in your lifetime. Pray with the individual to help them begin.
– Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. ~ People aren’t nice sometimes. We live in a fallen world; period. Even though this is true, we’ve got a decision to make when folks behavior poorly towards us. What we are to do, the choice we’re to make is very apparent in this scripture. It is not about, “I have the right to be impolite because that person was rude to me.” Not at all.
– Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. ~ When we love people as the uniquely designed beings they are, we discuss in their victories and their sorrows. We stand at their side whatsoever.
– Live in harmony with each other. ~ Certainly easier said than done if your mind and heart aren’t in the ideal place toward loving others and placing that love into action. You are responsible for you doing your part to live in harmony with others.
~ It can happen so easily, that a position or degree of authority makes us think more highly of ourselves than we should. There is no problem being proud of a promotion so long as you remain humble – recognizing that God has given you the skills to do the work, and it has blessed you with the position. And, more than anything, that we’re all equal in His eyes. Welcome His children that aren’t part of your “crowd”.
– Don’t be conceited. ~ Others will see your life as something other than the Truth of the Lord when your actions are motivated by conceit. This can cause someone to never even need to know Christ. That would be a tragedy.
– Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. ~ This may be among the toughest things we are asked to do in the bible. Consider the example of Christ’s death. Never has there been a situation for any people that even comes close where a human should be able to repay evil for evil. But, we are clearly told not to. There’s a right response for each situation on this earth. Choose what is appropriate.
– If it’s possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everybody. ~ Although some people do not make living in peace easy, bear in mind that this scripture says; “as far as it depends on you. You do not have to answer for any other person, but you do need to answer for you. Stay in a place where you choose peace, no matter what the other persons chooses.
How many times have you been there and how many times has that worked out really and really well for you? My guess is, not once. Revenge deposits bitterness and resentment in your heart. God is love and he made us to be love. Revenge is not love. That is why only the Creator of all can be the one to avenge those who have done us wrong. He does not want this in our nature.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” ~ How much more can you show love than by fulfilling the requirements of another human being – particularly one who has worked to be your enemy. It doesn’t matter what they do with your offerings. You have to do your part with a pure heart inspired by love. Otherwise, there is no point at all.
– Don’t be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. – Repaying someone who has hurt you by you damaging them, only deepens the wounds and lengthens the opportunities for resolution; perhaps indefinitely.
Loving others will definitely be a challenge at times. Remember, that you always have a choice in the way you see the challenge and how you cope with it. View the challenge as an opportunity to cleanse your heart and to demonstrate the love of Christ. You will grow considerably in your walk with the Lord and you maturity as an authentic person.