You don’t have to like someone to love them.
That was a game changer for me.
I’m quite certain you’ll relate to this. There are a few people who have treated me poorly, lied about me, hurt me…and I choose to pray for them, bless them, and forgive them. I choose to love them even though I don’t like them.
Why? Well, I do this because hating them didn’t work.
This is important: Hating them didn’t work. Hating them made ME more upset, more miserable. Hating them didn’t bother them one bit, but it kept me in a prison of sorts.
So I started praying, blessing, and forgiving out of desperation. Gradually, I did it out of obedience to Christ. And now I do this out of habit. I’d like to tell you I do it because I’m super holy. Nope. I’m a work in progress. I do it because I stay happy when I do. I do it because I enjoy peace and joy. I do it because I need mercy and forgiveness on a daily basis. I do it because it works. Love works. God’s way works! Can you say FREEDOM?!?
“But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…” Matthew 5:44
“Jesus said: ‘Love your enemies. For if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them.'” Luke 6:32 & 35
Y’all, it’s taken YEARS for this to become my default behavior. Even now-knowing what I know-I frequently indulge in a day (or three!) of whining, fussing, and cussing before (FINALLY!!) doing what’s right, what works. “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.” Romans 7:15 NIV I guess I’ll chalk it up to my petty, selfish flesh.
Here’s to choosing God’s way over hurt feelings, over pettiness. As always, I wish you MUCH joy.
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