Love. Everybody wants it. All humans have this in common. We want to be accepted and wanted. We are always ready to to receive it, but so much slower to dole it out, especially to those who are difficult to love. We don’t want to love the unlovables. And I’m not even talking about that person on the corner asking for change the angry cashier in the grocery store, although we need to be loving on them too. The people I’m talking about are the ones we have relationships with and deal with every day.
Maybe its that boss, who doesn’t treat you with the respect you feel you deserve or the person in the cubicle next to you who seems bent on giving you a hard time. Maybe its the friend who has wronged you or wasn’t there for you. Maybe its that cousin who always wants a second chance. Maybe its a sister who is always trying to outshine you. Maybe its a brother who knows just what to say to get your anger fuming. Maybe its the parent who never seems to understand. We all have them. That one person, or two, or three, or four, who seem unlovable. You know exactly who they are. That person who just came to mind while reading this…yes, that’s the one I mean.
The people who have hurt us. The people who are untrustworthy of our love or don’t deserve out kindness.
But it we have learned anything from Jesus, it’s that He loved the unlovable. Not only did He love the unlovables, but He used them for His kingdom! God went closer, when everyone else walked away. Every person that has sinned (which is every one, if you didn’t catch that), has given Jesus the right to be angry and upset with them. He could get offended. He could chew them out. He could scream, shout, mock, laugh, cry, gossip, never speak to them again. Instead He sat with the sinners. He chose a tax collector. He cherished the adulteress. He paid the thief’s debt. He stood up for His denier. He healed His arrester . He cleaned the feet of His betrayer. And while WE were still sinners, Christ died for us.
In the next 32 weeks, I will embark on a journey to love those who are hard to love, called 32 Weeks of Hope. I will be praying to see others through the eyes of hope, the way God sees us. He died for us while we were still sinners, I can love someone even when they are hurting me or others around me. Satan has come to rob us by enticing us and telling us we are justified in not loving these people, but God says that the world will know us by our love. That is not our love for people who are easy to love. They will see we are different from the world when we choose to love people who are hard to love.
This journey will be difficult, but I am covering myself and those I seek to love in prayer. Asking for God’s love to invade my life so I can share it with others. My flesh screams from the inside that not only is this a bad idea, but that I will never be able to keep up with it. I will never be able to conquer in love. I will never be able to love someone who has caused such deep pains. Why should I? Why should I give them another chance to hurt me? But God is changing my perspective.
If I choose not to love them, I am allowing anger and a bitter spirit to live within me, but God says that light has no fellowship with the darkness. I cannot be a child of God and keep anger in my heart towards someone. And when that voice whispers, tripping over the slithering of its forked tongue, that I cannot conquer this. That I will never be able to forgive that person. I will proclaim that Not by might, nor by power, but by the Spirit of God! For there is power in the Name of Jesus. I do not trust in a weak god, I am putting my heart in the hands of the man who made a blind man see, who made a lame man walk, who parted the red sea, who made water flow from a rock, who turned water into wind. And if He can raise Himself from the dead, then He can create in me a loving heart!