What Keeps You From Loving?

Last time we talked about how much easier it would be to extend grace if we could tell when a person was going through a rough time. We said that it would be easier to be patient, to forgive, and even  love others if we could tell what was going on in their lives. I called it Bad Behavior, Gauges, and Jesus.

But let’s take it a step further. We truly want to be more like Jesus every day, right? Jesus showed his patience with the woman at the well. He showed forgiveness to Peter after he denied Him. He offered mercy to many throughout the scriptures, as we talked about last time.

Have you ever thought about actions of Jesus at the last supper (John 13)? He came into a gathering of his disciples with the knowledge that it would be their last time together before He went to the cross.

He began by removing his robe and tying a towel around His waist. He washed the feet of the disciples and dried them with the towel. He showed love to all of them equally. And yet…Jesus already knew that Judas would betray Him and Peter would deny Him.  He KNEW what they were about to do and yet He showed them love anyway. He washed their feet as an act of love.

Now look in the mirror for a moment. Could you, knowing that someone was going to do you harm, love them? Could you extend grace KNOWING what they were about to do? We’re not talking about forgiveness after the fact. We are talking about  knowing ahead of time and STILL choosing to love.

How many of us still hold onto hurts and struggle to forgive others for their past actions? If we want to truly be like Jesus, we not only need to forgive, we need to be willing to love others KNOWING they will disappoint us, hurt us, reject us…the list is long.

Can you do it? Only with the help of Jesus. He can give you the strength to love no matter what. Ask Him.

“When Jesus had washed their feet and put on his outer clothing, he reclined again and said to them, “Do you know what I have done for you?  You call me Teacher and Lord—and you are speaking rightly, since that is what I am.  So if I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet.  For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done for you.
 “Truly I tell you, a servant is not greater than his master, and a messenger is not greater than the one who sent him.  If you know these things, you are blessed if you do them.” – John 13:12-17(CSB)