Biblical Priority #1
Love is patient, love is kind, It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no records of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. 1 Corinthians 13:4-8 (NIV)
Love unconditionally: This is vital and the most Christ-like thing you can do. This is something that should not be a problem for a grown-up, right? When we are rude, impatient, unforgiving, selfish, and the like at others it really just says that we are the shallow one. Proving that we have not grown up at all, still behaving like a child. Throwing tantrums or fits of anger to “teach” someone something is NEVER the answer. That kind of response will only put a distance between us and them and eventually dissolve the relationship. If this reaction is taken out on our child the only thing it teaches them is how to react in anger when they have those same emotions. Love is not proud. Most things are caught not taught.
Assume Goodwill: Learning this small nugget of wisdom set me free! Most of the time, a difficult situation with another is never as bad as we perceive it to be in our minds. Thoughts can spiral out of control in no time if we are not focused on truth. The best place for truth is in God’s word. When we dwell on a lie, it will start to come alive and take on a life of its own. Surrender that situation to the Lord; let him be your defender. When you assume goodwill, you will keep a clean heart and remain blameless. Grace and mercy living is so beautiful. What a legacy you will leave!!!
Put yourself in their shoes: This changes perspective. Recently, a store clerk was very rude, short and impatient while helping me. After a while, I simply told her that if she was having a bad day that I could come back later. She said no and perked up enough to finish what we were doing. I have bad days, I have definitely acted that way before, just ask my family!
So instead of being rude back or thinking terrible thoughts in my head (both would be sinful on my part), simply putting myself in her shoes let me remain blameless.
Challenge: Let us pray: Father, Our best example is Jesus. We ask for him to fill us with his love so we can live a life of love. We cannot do this without Him! We pray that we are led by The Holy Spirit to love with a pure heart. In Jesus name, Amen