Shirley's Corner - That Daily Choice1
This is Shirley's 12th post. We pray you've found her words to be inspiring, upligting, convicting and leaving you wanting more. What a gift it is to have the voice of wisdom being poured out on us. Grab a cup of tea and sit for a spell--I hear this one is going to be good...
"If you love Me, keep my commandments..." John 15:14
"This is what I command you: That you love one another."
On a daily basis, I proclaim my love to my Lord and I mean it with all my heart....but my "follow through" of consistently loving others as He asked leaves much to be desired. I find myself reacting instead of acting...judging instead of interceding...taking offense instead of forgiving. Instead of confessing my sinful thoughts about others, I look to justify those thoughts and "blame shift". That's who Shirley is.....BUT.....Almighty God, Who gave me both physical life and saw to it that I was "born again" into His Kingdom, has agreed to enable me to love the way He loves!
The first thing He asks, is for me to stop trying.
He dwells in this body with me and knows me inside out. He understands me when I don't understand myself, and He believes in me. He is willing to fill me with His love...that love that never gives up or runs out. He knows that on my best day I cannot "create" love...all I can do is receive His love and pass it on. Inhale His love and exhale His love on others.
The second thing He asks is, "Don't look at what you see!"
The arm of flesh will fail you...ALL people will disappoint you eventually. They don't usually mean to hurt you, however hurting people hurt others. Therefore, He instructs us not to focus on the behavior or words of those around us, but to focus on Him. He is the only One Who knows how to love perfectly...and His love is able to heal every wound and enable you to respond with love. So, keep your focus on Him and let Him supply the love needed in every circumstance.
It came as quite a shock to me as I realized it was His will for me to love both friend and foe. In Matt.5:43-48 He said this:
"You have heard that it was said, 'You shall. Love your neighbor and hate your enemy,' But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father Who is in Heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect."
Jesus always set the bar high...In your own strength it is impossible, but He never asked you to do it in your strength. Remember, with Him all things are possible and you CAN do all things through Christ Who strengthens you.
There will be times when you just don't want to love people. Those are the times He will remind you of what He went through in order to prove His love for you...and He will ask, "Do it for My sake...just because you love Me!" Loving like He loves demands sacrifice.
- At times it's inconvenient.
- At times it is expensive.
- At times it will be unappreciated nor returned, but you will never be asked to sacrifice more than He was willing to give for loving you.
There are many kinds of love and they all find their source in Him. Love is still the most powerful force on the earth today and we are asked to take up this weapon and wage war against the hatred that surrounds us. In 1Corinthians 13:8 we are told that LOVE NEVER FAILS!
If you believe what Jesus taught during His time here on earth, it is going to require some action on your part. Each and every day you will have to choose if you will let Him love through you. You will have to choose to lay down your life and LOVE!
"Bait of Satan"
With love from my chair at The Harvest Table
Photo Credit at top of post: bondibeauty.com
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