No matter how bad. . .


While I spent some time with my friend, who now resides in Ghana, I loved the distinction he made between people who might seem so poor and helpless, but reflect a heart of love for others; and those who seem so wealthy and proud in ignorance of what pride does, that they have no idea how to love the others around them. Either way, God loves both and yearns that love be the atmosphere of their lives on earth. He (my friend) actually spoke, hoping that the latter would someday learn to discover that our wealth counts for nothing.

I have walked alongside people who have, and still have issues with their parents or friends due to either a wide difference in how they see life, or a heartless molestation from the heads which tend to drive them crazy. No doubt, they have every right to! However, I can likewise say that I’ve been through such moments and my reactions to how I was treated could be 2/10 if you don’t mind me rating; and this makes it clear that there are two kinds of groups in this planet who either react the same way the molesters expect, or the opposite way, which is love and compassion toward the ones who enjoy hurting them. If we fail to live as sojourners in a world which isn’t ours, there’s only one available way to deal with hurt, betrayal and hatred—“hate” the haters; “hate” the hurters, and “hate” the betrayers. Always a world of HATE! Otherwise, we would treat every hater lovingly, compassionately, as we supply love to those who don’t deserve it.

Whether we believe it or not, people with bad attitudes can be so frustrating, but loving them supplies a light, no matter how small it might be, that persuades them to see that God loves them. Also, the dominant forces in the universe isn’t really religious, political, or economical, but “love” and “hate”, though hate is a product of ‘fear’. 

1. NEGATIVE REACTION: It’s not impossible to hate folks who stand up against you, especially when it’s those you once trusted as the best people on the planet. Even so, it’s always possible to respond to the same individuals with God’s love for them. Did they insult you? Better not speak, than say words that will destroy you and the hater. Fine, it might not hurt your hater, the anger remains impressed in your heart. Yes, it’s possible to be angry, but we shouldn’t let anger serve as a channel for our fleshy nature to walk in. Positive reactions towards those who offend us is good for us, as well as, proving to others who God really is. 

Nevertheless, supplying love to such people by blessing them when they curse you, or helping them when they do you wrong, isn’t possible unless you’re already abiding in Father’s love—that’s where love is cultivated in you and expressed towards others. The world doesn’t believe an iota of what we preach unless it sees a visible presentation or manifestation of these things we speak of. 

Most folks I have talked with didn’t really say any word to other folks in different religions before they came to know Jesus: they actually saw the life of Christ lived out through them and came to be challenged by their love for fallen humanity. Why? They all know God is love, no matter how much their leaders try to paint a wrathful image of him.

2. SEEING THEM AS THEY ARE: Imagine what it would be like if my dad’s attitudes towards everyone is one of hate, anger and rudeness, or he’s one who fails to meet the needs of his children! Now, if I abide in God’s love, I possibly comprehend that my dad’s behaviour is ungodly, and I have no reason why he’s that way; but I would love him no less, praying for a change of heart. You wouldn’t need to stop talking with him, and you don’t need to deviate or withdraw from showing him the kindness you believe he doesn’t deserve. Remember, nothing works or changes for better if you avoid such people, or try to change them. Just be real, and see where God might want you to show his compassion, as you watch him do what you couldn’t do.

One mistake I made was speaking ill-words towards and about my parents, when it’s my love for them that makes the difference. The day I did talk to them lovingly, I saw how it touched their hearts with a desire to listen. Hope enjoys seeing people in the way they are called to be, while working with love in showing such people the way to that point. It isn’t easy, but the result is always the best fruit produced.

3. TRYING TO CHANGE PEOPLE: Change isn’t the job of another human being in the lives of other people, but we might be able to help them press toward it. The fact that there are bad people, ungodly ones around you doesn’t call for you to think of ways to fix them with your answers. It doesn’t usually work! Do they have some attitudes you don’t treasure? Don’t press them into the ways you think they should change. Let God shine his light on their hearts and when he does that, they will discover how such rudeness is tearing down their personality. How? (Another question, I think!) If a person does things you think ain’t right and there’s a need for change, you don’t press them that “you should be like this.” No, create an environment where there’s room for you to show love to them in spite of what they’ve done to you, or what they’re doing to you. If they are sick, be the first to go with genuine concern (perhaps, you could use a lovely flower!) to express that you care; or, use it as an opportunity to care for them. What I’m saying is: Show love where they expect you to show evil, without pressing them to change. They will get frustrated, and you might end up being so, as well, if you do. Change emerging in people’s lives is a result of a growing light within them that is a fruit of love. Love softens the hardness in men’s hearts. You might not know, but it takes ground gradually.

4. EXPECTING A CHANGE SO QUICKLY, WHILE LOVING: Oh, Crud! That’s impatience! People responding to the love that touches them gently could take some time. Don’t try to force them into seeing that you’re so loving: it would all of a sudden drift to trying to please them. Do your part, and let God work through it! One negative result of expecting a change so quickly in the lives of such individuals is anger at their lack of response, or expression of love to you in return, and that gets bad. You could end up playing on the same team which they are.

5. NO BAD TONGUE: Even though they are doing wrong by the way they are living, or are horrifically bad, let your words speak good about them. With that, you’re building opportunities for them to see Jesus on you. 

It, kind of, sounds like I just placed some ideas based on my life experience and mistakes, but no matter how much you try, you can’t bend to it. Living as Jesus did isn’t the result of abiding to rules or several principles but abiding in him, in his love, so you can freely bless others with that love, no matter how bad they are. It’s a continuing work which takes place as you focus on your relationship with Jesus and how he’s nudging you to reveal his person to others. 

It’s not avoiding people that brings a change but loving them with every opportunity is what does.  This could be your dad, mom, friend or anyone else from other religions—it’s love that sheds the light.

You never can tell it!



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