Do Others Feel the Love?

Today I read Job 26-27, Mark 15-16, and RPJ Chapter 40. Relationships and how we treat other people says a lot about our faith and where we put our trust. Many times we may be well intentioned in what we are doing but we put the task or the principle in front of the person/people we are interacting with. When we do that, we end up hurting or using people to get to the end we have in mind. I think about Job who had to defend his own innocence to his friends who should have been comforting him instead of defending their perception of God. For some reason they felt his theology was off and felt they should spend their time correcting him instead of just being with him and supporting and praying him through the process of pain he was in. The Pharisees were more concerned about their position and maintaining all they had built up than they were with Jesus as a person. Their demand that he be crucified showed the extent people will go to in order to defend their own status or what they feel are their rights. Right in the book of Mark it says that Pilate knew that they wanted him dead because of their envy. It was obvious to everyone but them. In fact I bet they felt they had good theological grounds for demanding his death. Why do we get so caught up in ourselves that we forget to love others as Jesus commanded us to? Why can’t we seem to think of the other person before we respond?

This why it is such a powerful statement that Jesus makes that they will know we are his followers by our love. Do I love others enough for them to see the gospel in my interactions with them? Or, do they sense when I feel like they are interrupting what I really want to accomplish at the moment? Something as simple as loving others, which sounds too simple when we hear it, is one of the most difficult and profound things we could ever take on. And I know that I cannot be that person on a consistent basis without being so in tune with the Holy Spirit that I actually see the other person as God sees him/her. On this election day there are many Christians who have placed their hope and trust in the political system and they will be devastated if things don’t go their way today. Just as Israel put their trust in being rescued by Egypt in the Old Testament it feels like God is saying to us as he said to them, I am your only salvation. You are to put your faith, trust, and love only in me. When I do that I am free to love others as God loves them and begin to see the world through his eyes realizing that all of this stuff is temporary and my role is to share the good news of the Gospel of Jesus Christ whether times are good or bad. That sharing starts with my life. Do they know I am a follower of Jesus Christ by my love? Or, do they know only because I told them?

Lord, help me to see others through your eyes. Make me a person of love who sees people as a priority not as an interruption. Please help me to harness my good intentions especially if those intentions are put in front of loving others. I want people to know I am your follower by the way I love them. Amen.