The love of Jesus is not pragmatic. For pragmatic people, things are done, decisions, are made, and situations are viewed in ways that make sense. We approach the situation and act in a way that is logical. We look for ways that there will be the best possible outcome. Also, at least for me, we live and act in ways that will be the best for us and for our families.
I know that love is sacrificial. Living in a big family, motherhood, and even marriage has taught me to love unselfishly. For some time now, I have felt like I could confidently say that I understood what it was to share the love of Jesus. However, lately (well, ok, the past few days), God has shown me areas in my heart where I do not love sacrificially in a way that models Christs’ love.
Love doesn’t always reciprocate. Check. Love even when they can give nothing back in return. I got that. Love even when everything about the person and/or situation takes away what you hold dear. And in some instances, maybe even repulses you. Huh?
How does one do that? I found myself praying last night that Jesus would help me love as He loves. It’s one where I will have to continue praying. I cannot wait to act until I feel warm, and fuzzy. Feelings of affection are probably not going to happen. I cannot wait to love until the situation is a fair one for me. My idea of justice is far different from God’s idea of what is just. I cannot wait until all of this falls into place and make sense. I have to trust God is in the situation even when I do not see Him at the current moment.
Why am I going on about this? Why is this so important for me to share? Exactly this. If I cannot love with the intense love that reflects Jesus’ love, everything I do as a Christian is basically a facade. It’s lifeless. It’s worthless. It will have little to no impact as I minister to other people. My acts of love cannot be guided by what makes sense, what makes me remain in my little bubble of comfort, and what benefits me. I’m sorry, folks, we can be the nicest, sweetest, most generous people on the planet, but if we love guided by only those things, we are not loving sacrificially, but selfishly. This is normal and this is human. But I don’t want to continue in this way. For a while, I didn’t think I was until it has been put to the test lately.
Surrendering this over to the Lord. Asking for the empowerment of the Holy Spirit to love as Christ would love, is an absolute necessity, if we want to have an impact on our community, country, and world. If we are wanting God’s kingdom to expand, for miracles to happen, for people to give their lives to Christ, the love of Jesus’ has to be the fuel for the fire. I’m not writing this so I have something to write. I’m writing this because this is urgent.
I know that there are people who live there lives in such a way. They are driven with passion for other people and to see souls saved. They give their lives and everything they have just for the soul purpose of bringing Christ to the world. While all of our stories look differently, we ALL have the same calling to love as Christ would love. So, be praying. If you’re already doing that, then pray for me! You can be sure I am somewhere saying a big, AMEN!
If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.
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. ~ 1st Corinthians 13:1-7