Thursday, December 15, 2011

Give More 5 (Matthew 5: 43-48)

Matthew 5: 43-48

It is hard to love and it is hard to forgive. It is even hard to love and forgive the people in our own families sometimes let alone those people we don't even like.

When was the last time you offered love and grace to someone who really makes you clench your teeth? It's really hard.

Praying for people who irritate me is usually the last thing I think of doing. I tend to want to dwell on my anger or frustration. I talk to my friends to get confirmation about how annoying and inappropriate a person or their comments are. I completely do the opposite of what Jesus is telling us to do in this passage. Instead of forgiving and loving the people who hurt me, I hold my bitterness close and feed it.

I sometimes even find myself disliking those whom I usually love when their behavior is unattractive or hurtful towards me or others. I read recently that the moment we are "...most repelled by [our] child's behavior, that is [our] sign to draw the very closest to that child." I suspect that directive could be applied almost anywhere in our lives and interactions with others.

Giving more love is never a mistake.

The love we offer might be rejected, but it is never a mistake to offer it. If we stand in the amazing and infinite love that God gives to us, then we can stand to be rejected or hurt by others in this life.

Who in your life can you be more available to emotionally and mentally? It might be someone you love or it might be someone you hate. When you reach that point with another person where you want to throw your hands up and walk away, stop. Ask God to help you reach down deep within yourself and into His love to give more to that person than you thought was possible.

Father God, you give us more than we can receive or reciprocate. Help us to find the well deep within us that is filled by you. Help us to reach into that well of love for those we consider unlovable and unforgivable. Amen.