Mugs & Muffins!
Today’s Muffin is Blueberry Cranberry. So Nummy! I have been eating these since our fun educational tour at the cranberry marsh several weeks back. If you ever get the chance to make the trip, it is well worth it. *AND* They may just be my new favorite muffin. What are you craving?
My <a href=”http://<iframe style=”width:120px;height:240px;” marginwidth=”0″ marginheight=”0″ scrolling=”no” frameborder=”0″ src=”//ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=qf_sp_asin_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=titusjoy31-20&marketplace=amazon®ion=US&placement=B07FNHQ65Y&asins=B07FNHQ65Y&linkId=fa03a9ed2d0d4cfbd5a7e806181f4a05&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff”> mug is filled with steaming Matcha tea (with a heaping spoonful of real maple syrup)! What are you enjoying?
OH! What Sweet Love!
Main text reading for today:
“But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.” Matthew 5:44
Romans 12:9 “Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good.”
“Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.” Romans 13:10
Thank you for joining me today. Let us refresh on the last study before moving on. Simply go back to this lesson to read more in-depth if you desire. Amazing Love! God loves us so much, he sent his son to die on the cross for our sins. Forms of the word “LOVE” are found in our Bibles 546 times. God meant for us to “love”. The text we read last week was:
“Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself, is not puffed up,
Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil;
Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in truth;
Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.”
The greatest commandment given in service next to loving our Lord God, is to love one another as Christ loves us.
- God’s Love is Perfect!
- Mankind can try to replicate God’s Love, but will always fall short.
- We lack understanding of the depths of God’s true love.
- We can still do our best to love one another as God exemplifies.
- It is a command to love.
- God’s love is personal. And although it leaves us vulnerable, a true love towards others, is personal.
Then came up with a few extra ways we can show love towards others:
- Bring someone flowers
- Bring someone a coffee at their work in the morning.
- Deliver pizza to a single parent for dinner to ease her load that night.
- Offer to give rides to those that need it.
- Take a new friend out for a slice of pie at the local diner.
- Be present.
- Make someone dinner. Drop it off with paper plates and utensils.
- Bring someone their favorite treat.
- Offer to give relief to a family- babysit.
- Drop of your favorite christian book or cd to someone shut in that cannot get out and about.
Today’s main text:
“But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.” Matthew 5:44. Along with: Romans 12:9 “Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good.” And “Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law.” Romans 13:10
Isn’t God’s love amazing? HE is just so faithful when we fall short. On that note, how do we truly love people? What about individuals that don’t want to be loved? Or worse, love someone that wants nothing to do with us, is ill-willed or just plain spiteful towards us?
Loving God is our first obligation indeed. Next, however, is others. The Bible is so clear on this topic. God goes as far as even stating, “He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love.” I John 4:8
God explains to us how to love him. (With all our heart, mind and soul.) Yet, there are fewer verses on ourselves, at least on loving ourselves. Although, it is self explanatory, we rarely have to be told this, we naturally do this for the most part. God does say though to “..love thy neighbor as thyself.”
In this world, I can attest, there are many people that make “loving them so easy!” They are just sweet, funny, encouraging, friendly, outgoing, ,energetic, wholesome or ALL of the above!!! They truly are amazing people, many even non-Christians truly trying to live their best life and make a difference in this world. Perhaps friends and family fall into this category, but if not, family tends to stick around and we can love them fairly easier than others.
So what about the rest of the world? If individuals are not friends, family, or fall into the “easy to love” category, how do we remain faithful in loving on-purpose? What about an obnoxious co-worker? Or someone that just “rubs you the wrong way”, we’ve all met someone like that. Or a spiteful acquaintance? Perhaps an enemy? How do we love them? Well God wants me to love them the same way I love the “easy person to love”.
Why would God ask such a thing?
If you have your Bible handy, look up the next few verses. John 14:21, John 13:34, Ephesians 4:32, 1 John 3:18, Matthew 5:44 AND if you don’t look up any of the above, please flip to Hosea 1-3. The Story of Gomer and Hosea is beautifully written for such a time as this. Loving the unloveable. Even those that truly require “our forgiveness” or do not deserve our forgiveness. It mirrors John 3:16 that we are all so familiar with. Moreover, it mirrors Christ that states, “Father, forgive them, for they know not…” in Luke 23:34
After reflecting on these passages we can conclude with loving others is a choice, so Here are 5 ways to help us love others better, even those of whom seem “unlovable”.
- Pray for them. If you feel like nothing can work, you are forgetting prayer.
- Forgive. Love them like Jesus loves us. We don’t say we’re sorry for everything and sometimes people truly are downright selfish. It might feel like it’s over and over, but can you imagine how God feels about us?
- Commit. People are hard. Loving is not always easy. However, like anything, making a commitment (backed by character of course) locks us into trying our hardest to make the relationship work. Marriage is not the only thing we commit to, think of your job. We will commit to work and it’s rules/ regulations because we know there’s a “prize” or paycheck coming. When we commit to loving others as God commands, we can be assured we are pleasing God. But, we could also be creating life long friends, even from people of whom we once called adversaries. Some of the strongest relationships I’ve seen were from people that were once adversaries that have met on common ground. Some “agree to disagree” with respect, while others blossomed into beautiful relationships or friendships over time.
- Build a connection. If possible, search for the good in people. Honestly, almost every person I have met has something that is a “positive trait”. Everything has a foundation. Look for common ground or something that particular individual truly enjoys or holds dear to their heart.
- Listen. Everyone wants to be heard. Some of the most beautiful souls I’ve met seemed a bit quirky or completely “shy or unsocial” when I first met them. BUT it was more that no one ever took the time to listen, or a wrong first impression. So, as I tell my children and remind myself at times, “Everyone has something beautiful to offer this world”. God made each of us special and unique. And even though scars of this world often callous the heart, with a little digging and truly loving people, God’s love dusts or polishes a gem or beautiful attribute of his creation.
Oh how sweet it is, to be loved by YOU Lord!!!