1 Corinthians 16:14
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BECOMING A PERSON WHO LOVES OTHERS
As I grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ, I come less and less to question or doubt his love for me. I accept it with increasingly profound gratitude as the nourishing food, healing medicine, and liberating light of my soul.
Therefore, I spend less time asking God to prove his love for me, and I spend more time asking him to make me a better lover of him and the people in my life.
It is in the exercise of such love, however difficult and sacrificial it may become, that I find a blessedness that I could not experience were I to be merely a recipient of love, even of God’s love. This is so because God’s love does not have the character of terminating with those who receive it.
The love of God impels those who truly know and possess it to love others.
This loving of others makes the living of the Christian life to be both sweet and simple. As the love Jacob had for Rachel made the years of his service to her father pass quickly and sweetly, so the love the Lord gives us to have for and demonstrate to others transforms all cost and sacrifice involved in our giving such love into blessedness for us. In Galatians 4:15, Paul equates supreme blessedness with supremely sacrificial service. The Galatians were most blessed when they were lovingly committed to giving their own eyes to relieve Paul’s affliction. This can only be true if such loving service is rooted and grounded in the infinitely sacrificial and saving love that God has for us (Eph. 3:14-19). If we are so rooted, love issues from us as the natural fruit of God’s Holy Spirit, not as the artificial and exhausting works of man.
The simplicity of this is in our asking in every situation and with every person one question: What is the loving thing to do? We do not need to manipulate factors or persons in any situation in order for us to love others in those situations. We do not need to wait until others seem to us worthy of our love, nor do we need to fear that our loving will impose loss upon us, when it will only prove to be for us a greater blessing to give such holy love to others than to receive anything else in all the world.
- William Harrell
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