Inspired by the Holy Spirit
Written by: Teresa Criswell
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"Love isn't truly love until it's challenged."
"Do WHAT Lord?" It was as though I could hear the adorable character from 'Different Strokes' say, "Whatcha talkin' about Willis?"
Hmmmmm...Love isn't truly love until it's challenged?
I was thinking, "Now come on!" But at the same time I thought, "To love the loveable is incredibly easy." Of course it's easy to love great people, they are like beautiful flowers; I could smell and adore them all day long. But what about those who are like a prickly cactus?
It's quite interesting to see both sides of this. We often think in judgement over those who rub us the wrong way...but what about us? Have we considered the possibility that we could be 'rubbing others the wrong way'? To some we may be like a flower whom they really adore and admire; but then to others we may be like a prickly cactus.
With all that said, you may be asking, "Teresa, what is the point?" Well I'm glad you asked. I am finding and continuing learning what LOVE does and is, which is so beautifully revealed in I Corinthians 13:4-7, but I am also learning the HOW to truly love. Of course our Jesus is the greatest example; as He also challenged us with the following, "If you are willing to listen AND obey, I tell you, Love your enemies." SCREEEEEECH...WHAT THE HECK???? Love my enemies????? And as though I can hear Him say with a patient smile, "Teresa, I'm not finished. Yes. Love your enemies and let me tell you how:
DO GOOD to those who HATE YOU.
PRAY for the happiness of those who CURSE YOU.
PRAY for those who HURT YOU..."
Notice for every hate, curse and hurt; God through Jesus Christ by the power of the Holy Spirit reveals the equipment of how to partner with Him and watch those hates, curses and hurts be turned around for His glory...and in turn we get to also be vessels of honor who ECHO what HE is in the business of doing...turning every evil, vile thing into a testimony of WHO HE IS!!!
Although we may not have the ability to love our enemies on our own strength...we have the ability through Christ Jesus as we are reminded that we can truly do ANYTHING THROUGH CHRIST WHO GIVES US STRENGTH. And we can also be triumphantly and victoriously reminded that it is not by our power or might but BY THE SPIRIT OF GOD WE CAN DO WHAT HE HAS CALLED US TO BE...AND THAT IS VICTORIOUS IN HIM!
As we welcome the operation of walking in true love over those who hate, curse and hurt us, let us also pray for others to be able to operate in God's love over us. Let us be in continual remembrance of God's True LOVE; for even while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us!!! Now that is love that was truly challenged.
Principle of Who God is as revealed in Zechariah 4:6