DEVOTION – DAY 105
1 John 4:21 “Loving Others”
1 John 4:21 “And He has given us this command: Anyone who loves God must also love their brother and sister.”
The Bible tells us that God is love. In His essential nature and in all His actions, God shows that he is loving. That is why the apostle John, the writer here, in vs 8 tells us that God is love. And God loves us first even when all of us at one time did not love Him. Instead, we wanted to live our lives as we please without God. However, God loved us first. He loved us so much, God was willing to send His only Son, Jesus, to die on the cross on our behalf. John confirmed this in vs.14 and 19. So, if we say we love Jesus, He commands us to love our fellow brother and sister.
I have always found it easy to love people that are like me, or think like me, or have similar backgrounds. But it is a different matter when it comes to loving people who are not like me, or someone who is difficult or unpleasant. But I have to remind myself that God first loved me when I was unpleasant in His eyes. Before I was a Christian, I hardly thought about God. I had followed my parents and worshipped idols. I have to remind myself that if God loves me even though I did not love Him back, and if I call myself a follower of Jesus, I have to also love people in my life that I do not like. This is a reminder I have to keep telling myself every time I have to work with people I may be uncomfortable with. I have to treat them in the way that I would like to be treated.
I have to work on something with 4 men who are all unbelievers. Their ages range from the 30’s to late 60’s. Some have big egos and one is quiet. Since we all have different personalities and ideas, working together can be difficult. My initial reaction was to resign from this group so that I would not need to work with them. But I am reminded that God wants me to love them. That means I have to learn not to judge anyone or talk bad about anyone. It means that I have to sometimes be a mediator when some of the men in this group disagree with each other. I have to assume the role of the peacemaker. I am learning to listen to everyone first and try to understand their point of view. When I disagree with anyone’s view, I will share what I think objectively and use facts to support what I say so that the other men will not feel that I have any hidden agenda against them. This is how I am showing love to these men. I hope to win their trust and if God gives me the opportunity, to invite them to our church. I know God loves them and so, I must show love to them.
Let us pray: Heavenly Father, thank you for first loving us. Thank you for giving us your only Son, the Lord Jesus. Help us to love others always and not use them. We humbly ask this of you. In the precious name of Jesus. Amen.
- Who are the people in your lives that you would rather avoid or people you dislike?
- If you are to follow this command to love the people you would rather avoid, what are some changes you must take in your attitudes and actions in order to show your love towards them? Discuss.
- Why do you think God wants us to love our fellow brother and sister? Discuss.