I have been pondering this whole love always business a lot the past few days… and I have been struggling with really being able to blog about it because I am still learning how to walk it out.
Walk in love. Not easy, but very necessary, and in the end, full of eternal rewards (and earthly ones too.)
What does it mean though?
It means, when someone talks about you behind your back, you let them. Don’t defend yourself, or talk about them. as much as it goes against your very being, let God defend you. Let the fruits of your walk lead people to the truth. There is something very telling to people when they hear gossip about you that you let go. In our brains, we think, if we don’t say anything, then they will think its true. But in reality, when you defend yourself, you come across guilty.
It means, when people ignore you, or “snub” you, you show them love. Say “Hi” anyway. Go out of your way to smile at them, to talk to them. Include them in your conversation, even if they exclude you. No, it’s not easy, and in fact it is very uncomfortable. At times, awkward. Do it anyway. Kill them with kindness? It works… and it’s love.
It also means promoting those who try to demote you. How? When someone asks, “Do you know anyone who would be good at ___”, if the person who is hard to love would fit the blank… recommend them. Even though it feels like a slow, painful death… do it.
It means praying for them. And, no, not the prayer that says “Change them, let them see the error our their ways”. Pray for blessing over them… for peace & more of His presence. Pray for financial blessing, for favor at work, for a healthy family and home. Sure, it doesn’t feel right, if they are being nasty, why should they be blessed, but try it. Try it for 2 weeks and see if you attitude towards them doesn’t change (it will, I promise).
It means not letting their words and actions make you think less of yourself.
It means knowing who you are in Christ and wanting them to know who they are too.
It means understanding that hurt people, hurt people.
And it means remembering what Christ said:
But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.
No… they aren’t evil… but the premise still applies.
This isn’t a comprehensive list of what to do. These are merely things that the Lord has shown me. I am sad to say that I am learning this and walking through this because I did not always do those things. Its not easy! When every fiber of your being is screaming for revenge, crying out for your own justice, it is so hard to do what is right. It feels like you are doing the wrong thing at first. Loving the unlovable is truly hard. There is no easy way. There is no magic solution, no 12 step program, but we need to try. Take it one step at a time… pick one thing to try and just try it for one week. Keep trying, keep praying, keep asking God to guide your steps and heal your heart. He will… and it is worth it.