“People need loving the most when they deserve it the least.”
The above quote by John Harrigan has become a principle of life for me. At the same time, it’s one of the hardest things for most of us to do, in our humanness, to love someone when they deserve it the least.
Have you ever had times when your behavior was so out of control that you couldn’t stand yourself? When I was a young mother and wife, there would be one day most months when I was “PMS”ing, in which I would find myself either yelling and screaming uncontrollably all day, or crying all day. I was so miserable I couldn’t stand myself, I felt just plain unlovable! It’s times like that when I think if someone had been able to just grab me and hug me it would have helped to get me out of that nasty mood, in spite of the hormones that were working against me.
I believe that loving someone to that extent takes a supernatural love. It takes the love of Christ flowing through us to be able to reach out to the unlovable. Jesus was criticized often for associating with “sinners,” those people who others thought of as unlovable, not worthy of their time and attention – tax collectors, prostitutes, lepers, etc.
The Bible says in 1 John 1:19, “We love because he first loved us.”
Christ died for the ungodly. Romans 5:6
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: “While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
Jesus said, “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even ‘sinners’ love those who love them. But 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. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” Luke 6:32 & 35.
Prayer: Most gracious and loving Lord, how grateful I am that the you loved me enough to die for my sins, so that through you, I am able to stand before a just God and live in His presence throughout eternity. I thank you that your love compels me and pray that by the power of the Holy Spirit within me, you will enable me to love those who seem unlovable, as you have loved me. Through your power grant me the grace to extend mercy to all. Amen.
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