Day 276

Love.

Romans 8:35-39 says,

“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?

As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.

Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,

Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature; shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Pretty amazing to read and meditate on isn’t it?  We generally like this passage because we are reminded of God’s love towards us as individuals.  We know the trials and tribulations we have had in this mortal body, and this Scripture assures us that we are loved anyway.

But I have another passage I would like to share for us to dwell on today with Romans 8 in mind.

In John 15:12 Jesus is speaking and He says,

“This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.”

He adds to this and says we are His friends if we do what He commands us to do.

I want to be a friend of Jesus!  Don’t you?

So I must ask myself;

What do I allow to separate me from loving others as Christ loved me?

We are individuals, so we will have different responses to this question.  But, whatever our answer, we probably feel pretty badly about it.

I John 4:16 says,

“And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us.  God is love and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God and God in him.”

We can draw a simple conclusion to this by stating:

To the degree I dwell in God will be manifested in the love I have and show towards others.

The separating factors will diminish between me and another human being.  If I love God and dwell in His presence (LOVE), I will have and show love. Period.

It is easy for me to love my four children.  VERY easy.  They are the joy of my life and there is nothing they can do that will cause me to stop loving them.  We talk every day and have solid relationships because we communicate love towards one another.  It is easy to love them.

It is NOT easy for me to love or show love to my next door neighbor in the apartment complex we are staying in off and on during furlough.  He LOVES his hip-hop music.  And he loves to play it LOUD on Friday night while he smokes his weed with friends.

What is the difference between who is easy to love and who is hard to love?  The level of communication.

If I want to be a friend of Jesus, I need to love others.  The first step towards doing that is to communicate.

In this apartment building you can hear everything from footsteps to people brushing their teeth (gag).  So, every now and then, when my neighbor is about to leave, I also open my door and walk out.  I have smiled and spoken to him (he is a young man, don’t think I am being inappropriate).  I haven’t gotten more than a grunt and chin raise from him, but I want him to associate me with kindness.  I want to show love even though my flesh wants to bang on the wall and tell him we are all going deaf and getting high because of his Friday night exploits.

That is just one silly example of my life that I hope makes you think.  People all around us are dying and going to hell.  And the more and more we progress into this century, the farther removed our nation is from the principles it was founded upon.  In the opinions of our country’s people, Jesus is not the Savior, He is their enemy.  And the only way we can combat this line of thinking as individuals is to make sure we are dwelling in God, learning of His love and then communicating it to others.

Luke 6:35 says,

“But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest:  for he is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil”

Did you notice the last part of that verse?

Are you being kind to the unthankful?

Are you being kind to the evil?

Love.  Communicate that love.  Be kind.

Until Next Time, Lord willing,

Sheri

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