Connect 21 – Day 12 (LOVING OTHERS)

“If anyone boasts, “I love God,” and goes right on hating his brother or sister, thinking nothing of it, he is a liar.  If he won’t love the person he can see, how can he love the God he can’t see? The command we have from Christ is blunt:  Loving God includes loving people.  You’ve got to love both. 1 John 4:20-21 (MSG)

There are so many valid reasons to hate a person.  Whether you’re a victim of a violent crime, a loved one of a victim, the betrayed spouse, an abused child, a discriminated employee, or even an offended church member, God never excused us from not loving others.  With so much division, polar political views, great canyons of moral standards, and socially sensitive environments, God still expects us to land on loving others.  This is our stamp of who God is in us, as Christians and who we are in HIM.

Saint, God knows your hurt, your pain, your frustration, and even your anger.  HE was there, remember?  When the one asked for forgiveness on that cross, Jesus gave it to him instantly while many others chanted HIS death.  Jesus loved us while we were yet sinners according to Romans 5:8!  In other words, while we were everything that abused, victimized, discriminated against, ridiculed, and/or offended Jesus, HE still loved us and took on our punishments!!!  Do you realize that these actions warranted instant punishment whether it be by death or severe consequence?  Imagine, you’ve done something unintentionally horrendous.  You know you must face the consequence; but someone, that you don’t know, agrees to pay the fine, serve the time, endure the penalty on your behalf.

At the time of this writing, the media has been filled with the news of a man that rushed into a Jewish Synagogue and killed several people only because they were Jewish.  The 911 operator informed the medical staff at a nearby hospital that the perpetrator had been wounded and was on the way there via ambulance and that he just shot up a synagogue.  The first three doctors to treat him and ultimately save his life were Jewish.

I can’t help but to wonder, what if love and/or the duty to care had not been present?  What would you have done?  Selah!  Most times, love starts with forgiveness.

Application For The Day:

Examine your heart.  Are you holding any unforgiveness?  If so, forgive that person right now so that you may live a life of freedom.

Prayer For The Day: 

Heavenly Father, help me to love those whom I felt haven’t loved me.  Help me to love those whom I don’t think deserve to be loved.  Jesus endured the cross for me.  Please help me to forgive and endure others, in Jesus’ Name.

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