Love you all, praying for you,
I just love God’s Word. It’s real, it’s practical. And it’s truths are not always at face value, not always on the surface. Sometimes you need to dig a little deeper and apply principles across the board. Have you ever heard someone use the phrase ‘tough love’? We think of tough love – as the discomfort of confronting someone, or not letting a child get away with what they want to do. But tough love is also, when love is tough, when it’s tough to love. In some ways, love doesn’t start until someone does something to wrong you, or hurt your feelings. It’s easy to love those who love you. God said even the worldly do that… It’s easy to love those who always treat you well. It’s harder to love someone who treats you poorly, selfishly, or unfairly. How open are you to forgive? Does it take a while? It’s heartbreaking the televised court scenes of relatives of victims letting loose on the perpetrators vowing never to forgive them and wishing that they rot in jail, or in hell. Perfectly understandable as a feeling, but one that God says will affect you more than the one you direct it against. Unforgiveness always affects you more than them. They are what they are, they did what they did, and God said He will bring justice, He said vengeance belongs to Him. But as for you – the danger of unforgiveness – even beyond the medical proof of resulting physical and mental illness – is that unforgiveness could prevent God from forgiving you. At the end of the LORD’s Prayer Jesus gave this instruction. “…Give us today our daily bread, and forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, neither will your Father in heaven forgive yours.” Jesus gave an example of a servant who was forgiven a great debt that he couldn’t pay back, and went right out and put a man in jail for not paying a very small debt that was owed to him. The master was quite unhappy, it didn’t end well for that wicked servant. Loving people is easy if they are lovable. Love is tough when you are called to love the unlovely. God even said, love your enemies, do good to those who do not do good to you. Ephesians 4:2 – God said this is how people will know that we are Christ’s followers – if we have love for each other. Not just what we do for each other to love them, but what we do when we disappoint each other. Sometimes love starts when you have the opportunity to forgive, to overlook faults. Will you? Will you believe the best, and forgive others when they are less than kind or righteous toward you? Or do you just love those who always treat you in the best way. You’ll have very few friends if any. Those who have been forgiven much love much. That’s why it’s good to remember God’s great forgiveness for you. Not to go back and take up the burden of guilt that God saved you from, but to remember how much He’s forgiven you – much more than you could ever have against any person you know. Will you forgive? Will you love, when love is tough? The best way to practice is forgiving your spouse, your siblings, your friends. If you don’t learn to forgive and love well, those closest to you – how will you ever love your enemies when that opportunity comes your way, and it will. Praying that you will review the PRISM Topic – Forgive, and the Relationship Topic – Forgiveness and Restoration. God gives us opportunities to love those closest to us. The more you do it, the less tough it becomes.
Love you all,
Kelly Kamentz - Jesus follower, husband, father, and friend, helping others surrender time, thoughts, money, and testimony, to fulfill their purpose!