Originally published Monday, 30 September 2013.
I’m going to come from an angle on this one that I pray will minister to you from the inside out…literally. I don’t know about you, but over the years, I’ve learned that true love is so much deeper than the surface love that we’re used to hearing about. It goes beyond those famous three words, “I love you.” The Bible tells us in 1 John 3:18, “Dear children, let us stop just saying that we love each other; let us really show it by our actions.” (NLT) So today, we’re going to go beyond mere words, as I venture to enlighten you on the truth about love.
Okay…for starters, have you ever heard, “It’s easy to love those who are loveable, yet hard to love those who are un-loveable?” For most, this is true. Do you know some hard-to-love people in your life? Think about it for a second or two. Now, you’re probably either laughing at this moment or cringing. Ha! I know I’ve had my share, and probably will continue to encounter them until Jesus comes. However, it’s not a matter of whether I will encounter them. Instead, it really boils down to how I will truly show love to them and to others who just need to be loved.
As you know, Jesus has called us to love one another no matter what, especially our Christian brothers and sisters. I’m reminded of 1 John 2:10-11 which says, “Anyone who loves other Christians is living in the light and does not cause anyone to stumble. Anyone who hates a Christian brother or sister is living and walking in darkness. Such a person is lost, having been blinded by the darkness.”
Yep. Pretty real huh? Yet, He commands us to love one another. John 13:34 says, “So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love one another.” So no matter how ugly or nasty someone can be to us, we still have to choose to show love to them. Remember this is how we show that we are His true disciples, by the love that we have for one another (John 13:35). Not only that, but how many times do we tell the Lord that we love Him? Well, Jesus tells us, “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.” Have you ever heard it that way?
With that being said, let’s look at the love chapter for a moment. First Corinthians 13:4-7 says, “Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. Love does not demand its own way. Love is not irritable, and it keeps no record of when it has been wronged. It is never glad about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.” (NLT) *Now, go over it again, and look at each sentence here to see if you’re loving those around you in this way. Let me help you.
Are you patient with difficult people or those who just need to be loved? Are you kind or mean? Are you jealous of others and what they have? How about boasting of things to others about your accomplishments, position, ownership, or possessions? Are you proud and puffed up with knowledge, prestige, gifts, your lifestyle, or feeling that others need to acknowledge you for all that you do? Do you demand having your own way in situations vs. giving others a chance to voice their ideas? Or do you sense that you can be a little selfish in this respect? Do some people irritate you like crazy when they come around you? Hmm…Do you keep reminding yourself and replaying incidents in your mind about those who have done you wrong? Are you glad or smirk at the injustices that take place around you or do you rejoice when the truth comes forth? Are you a person who easily quits or gives up on people or tells them that you will do something, yet don’t keep your word? Do you doubt what God has said, because your breakthrough hasn’t happened yet or because things are a little too hard for you right now? Do you have hope for you and others? And lastly, do you ask the Lord for the strength to endure no matter what circumstance comes your way?
I know these are some tough questions, and I’ve had to ask myself these same questions; but this chapter actually shows us how to love. If we’re not exemplifying this type of love (described above) to others, then we need to pray and seek God to show us how to do it by the power of His Holy Spirit. The world and the people around us need love. We’re supposed to be the hands and feet of Jesus, but without love, how will they know that we are His disciples? How will they glorify our Father in heaven? Jesus said in John 8:32, “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” It’s time to show some love ladies. Do your part today…
Remember, Jesus is coming back soon! And those who endure unto the end shall be saved. So let’s get ready from the Inside Out!
*Thanks for reading! I hope and pray that you’ve been enlightened from this post. Feel absolutely free to leave a comment or for questions you can email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org, and I will respond promptly. Also, tune in every Monday at 7:30am for new posts! Don’t forget to “Like” my Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/InsideOutWCourtnaye) and share this blog with friends, family, co-workers, or your women’s group or ministry. I’d love to stay connected and help more women grow in the Lord! Thanks again and may God be with you!