I’ve been making my way through the New Testament and the resounding message in each book seems to be “love one another.” Sounds simple, right?
While I’d like to say I love everyone, I know that I don’t. I love those who love me which is easy to do. The hard part is showing love to the ones who treat me bad or simply don’t deserve it. Now I believe the Bible encourages us to be discerning about love. Because you can love from a distance without getting yourself tangled in the mire or trampled on. I love my brother, but I only deal with him on a “need to” basis and feed him with a long-handled spoon. I show love by taking care of Jazmine.
Right now I am having a hard time displaying neighborly love toward all. I don’t love (or even respect) most of the people I work with. Eliza and her family–forget about it. And there’s no love lost between my husband’s middle sister and I. Then there’s the weird family that lives next door to us. Nor can I feel any affection for the many yahoos that seem to flock my way. I try not to think about such unpleasantries but I can’t deny that feelings of animosity and bitterness live in me.
I imagine reaching this plateau would involve humbling one’s self. Thus, I guess my first lesson lies in humility. I have so much work to do!
Yeah- while it does seem the way to go is to give love to even the most undeserving, it sure is hard. I cannot imagine anymore extending a loving hand to Buttercup’s mother… yet, I know somehow I have to get there.
We all have these people in our lives. You have shown a tremendous amount of “love” towards Eliza. Remember “love” isn’t “like”. You will never like her, and there is an amount of anger to deal with in regards to her. Yet you have always demonstrated “love” towards her, and I believe if you had to you would again. It might be an extension of your love for the boys, but you would show it.
Showing God’s love doesn’t have to be hugs, kisses, and being their doormat. But I understand about feeling like you are still a work in progress. If we weren’t, we would be God, wouldn’t we? 🙂 Have a beautiful, glorious day!
I know you’ll end up doing the right thing. It’s so hard sometimes isn’t it?
Morocco, this is such a profound post. I love many people from a distance, but I just can’t allow their dysfunction to affect my life. I can not knowingly allow someone that is mentally not balanced to affect my children.
You have always been such an inspiration to me. You loved Eliza in ways that I know I would not be capable of. None of us are perfect, but you’re an awesome lady!
Yes, there is a distinction between love and like. As much as I want to let things go, it IS hard to do. I still have a lot of bitterness toward Eliza and her family. Bitterness isn’t good, but it is a real valid emotion. And I can’t hide it and tuck it away.
I am a fairly compassionate person, so I agree, I would show Eliza love again. I try to nurture the best side of people.
Maybe neighborly love is being who you are no matter who they are—if that makes sense?
Your light is infectious, pass it on!
We are all works in progress. It is extremely hard for me to feel any sort of kindness towards those who have hurt me. For now, I just work on not hating them, which is different than loving them.
Love thy neighbour as thyself, very difficult to practice.
Everyone has their own interpretation of what this means to them. My interpretation is that if you truly love yourself, you will love your neighbour. Your neighbour’s demonstration’s are not yours, they are theirs. If they choose to demonstrate unacceptable behaviour that is their business, not yours. If the behaviour is affecting you harmfully, then you have to take care of you, and remove yourself from them.
That said, you do not allow their negativity to affect you. You do not engage in the game. You continue to handle yourself the way you always do, and that means that you behave that same way to them. In other words you are untouched by them. You continue to be who you are, regardless of how they are.
Not sure if that makes sense to you. You already do this, so you are demonstrating love your neighbour as yourself. You have done this with Eliza all along.
This is one of the most difficult life lessons, and I have certainly failed this many times over and continue to. Much easier said then done.