But God showed his great love for us by sending Christ to die for us while we were still sinners.
Written by: Courtney Flocken
God knew what He was talking about when He challenged us to love God and love people. It sounds easy in theory, as long as you don’t have roommates, neighbors, friends, a spouse, parents, or—dare I say—something to return at Target. He knew that would be a big enough challenge to last a lifetime. But it’s pretty easy to see how unloving the world can be. It’s also pretty easy to see how unloving I can be! The same person who can fiercely turn friends and strangers to God is the same one who is challenged by a fun-loving, all-too-like-his-momma, rowdy little two-and-a-half-year-old boy.
Choosing love is exactly that: a choice. God didn’t choose us in our goodness, but by His goodness. He chose us in the full knowledge of our sin, and He loves us in spite of it—on our worst day and our best. He freely gave love to us when we didn’t deserve it or couldn’t earn it.
Those same circumstances are available to us daily as we go about life. I used to think the mission field was a defined time and place—Fiji, Africa, or the downtown streets of Phoenix. But now I’m realizing more and more each day, the mission field is everywhere I go. I have the opportunity to usher in love and reveal God’s heart at the gym on a treadmill doing life with others that don’t believe the same as me. I’ve never heard anyone say, “I was introduced to Jesus by this really judgy, Bible beating, Christian person.” Rather, we often hear a person profess that there was an invitation to “come as you are” and let God do the rest.
Whose life could be eternally changed if you stacked hands with God and accepted His challenge to love? You have a mighty power: The Holy Spirit lives inside of you to guide and lead you to love in the face of an unloving world. In spite of what the people in this world deserve, are you up for the challenge of giving them exactly what they need and what God so freely gave you?
Thought of the day: How can you love the unlovable through the power of the Holy Spirit?
Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for today and the opportunity to learn more about who You are and how to become more like You in Your love for the people in this world. I ask You to reveal and remove anything in me that is not of You and holding me back from loving as radically as You have loved me. In Jesus’ name, amen.