Since the beginning of this year I have been on a search to discover what unconditional love really is, what it looks like in my life, and deciphering if the love I try to show is the True Love of my Heavenly Father.
I have a deep genuine love for people, but I have struggled with really letting that be seen. The past few months God has just wrecked me with an overwhelming since of compassion and love for people. He has given me such a desire to build relationships and meet people where they are. But what does that mean and how does that look in my everyday life?
The bible gives such a clear description of what our lives should look like when we are truly loving people with a selfless love in one of the most memorized and quoted scriptures of all times. John 3:16 says:"for God SO LOVED the world that HE GAVE..." God loved us so much He simply gave... He gave up everything... He freely gave up His life because He was so moved with compassion and love for you and for me!! How beautiful and sweet is that!!!
I have been asking the Lord to give me practical ways to REALLY love people in my life and all I ever feel like He tells me to do is: "Give freely and love unconditionally" After a few weeks of trying all kinds of tactics to make those words a reality in my life, I realized this simply phrase just had to become the driving force behind all my actions. The Lord was simply trying to show me all I have to do is generously give of myself... everything... my time, belongings, finances... everything! My life really isn't my own and knowing that brings freedom to my heart!
My home has become, once again, an open door to house anyone and everyone; stranger or friend, my possessions are merely items to bless others with and bring smiles to their faces, my time is valuable and is spent for purposes that build the kingdom not simply to satisfy my wants. This journey of life is amazing!!
Yesterday as I was doing some reading before I went to work the Lord gave me a verse that encouraged me as I'm learning all of this: Proverbs 11:25 says "A generous man will prosper; he who refreshes others will himself be refreshed."
I look at that and I'm encouraged to know that as I waste my life giving of myself I really am being refreshed and filled. It's the most rewarding feeling to know you are impacting someone's life for eternity!
I want to encourage you try living your life for others.... giving freely of yourself and watch how it refreshes you. As crazy as it sounds it really is more blessed to give than receive.
Don't think to hard about it... the best place to start is simply loving the person right in front of you.
Iwant to leave you with this passage of scripture from Luke 6 that encouraged me this morning... This is REAL love!
27"But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. 30Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. 31Do to others as you would have them do to you.
32"If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' love those who love them. 33And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' do that. 34And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even 'sinners' lend to 'sinners,' expecting to be repaid in full. 35But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. 36Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. 37"Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. 38Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."