Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 NIV
I am thoroughly enjoying being a grandmother. No one can tell what is going to come out of the mouths of little ones. One day my daughter was correcting the behavior of my 4-year old grandson. They had a discussion with him about what he had done wrong. In between his sobs, he said, “Even when I am in trouble, God still loves me.”
As believers, that is something we learn and accept when we receive the gift of salvation. God’s love for us is unconditional. But once we become a Christian, that same type of love should be evident in our lives. Even when someone wrongs us, they should see us exhibiting the love of Christ toward them.
When Christ was talking to his disciples in Luke, He told them,
Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man. Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets. Luke 6:22-23 NIV
It’s hard to feel like rejoicing when someone is doing anything but showing us love. But when we think of how Christ was treated, who are we to think that we should not face persecution ourselves? And even more as we get closer to the coming of our Lord, Christ said,
Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold. Matthew 24:12 NIV
Instead of focusing on the wrong done to us, we ought to concentrate on allowing God’s love to flow through us toward our offenders. In and of ourselves, we cannot love anyone. When we surrender to the control of the Holy Spirit, we can show His love to everyone.
But how? We need to make sure we stay in God’s Word. When we fall in love with God with all our heart, soul, mind and strength, we are empowered to love others as ourselves. (Mark 12:29-31)
God’s Word clearly tells us how to love others. And if we are questioned about how we can still love someone when we have been wronged, then we can assure them that even when they do wrong, God still loves them. And if God loves them, then we should too.
Some people are hard to love. We can only show love toward others by allowing the love of God to totally fill us and flow out of us. All of God’s Word can teach us how to love others through the power of the Holy Spirit. To receive encouragement and wisdom of how to love the unlovable, read Luke 6, John 15 and Romans 5.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank You that You loved me even while I was still in my sins. I often fail You, but You never stop loving me. Help me to show that same level of love to everyone around me. Allow me to share Your love with those who need to come to You. Thank You, Lord, that You promise to fill me with Your power so that I may show love toward others. I love You, Lord. In Jesus' Name I pray, Amen.