We’ll never completely agree with another person on everything. Not even our spouse or best friend. Of the nearly eight billion people in the world right now, there’s not a single person like you. That means there won’t be anyone with your exact viewpoint on life, politics, money, relationships, or religion. You are uniquely you, and so is the person next to you.
Even though we’re all different, we can still love others. Why is it important to love people when we clearly don’t see eye to eye with? Because Jesus said so. He said, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another” (John 13:34 NIV). When Jesus commanded us to love others, He didn’t say that we had to agree with them first. So, what does love look like?
Love considers others first.
Love looks for the best.
Love shows respect.
Love seeks unity.
Love isn’t selfish.
Love offers the best.
Love displays patience.
Loving others involves pain. Love means giving of yourself. Love means putting your heart out for someone to potentially wound. Love means being selfless and thinking about the needs of others before we think of our own. We’ll never love someone without discomfort accompanying it. It isn’t easy and is sometimes unnatural, but loving others is something we’re called to do as followers of Jesus. Even with those we don’t agree. Especially those with which we don’t agree.
There will always be things we have to “agree to disagree on.” It could be the way we do our finances—some of us choose to live debt free, others don’t. It could be when we decide to start or end our day—some of us are early to bed, while others stay up late. Or it could be more serious differences that concern politics, social issues, or current events. Loving others while disagreeing with them at the same time is possible.
Our Daily Bread
When We Are Weary
Let us not become weary in doing good……Galatians 6:9
Sometimes trying to do the right thing can be exhausting. We may wonder, Do my well-intentioned words and actions make any difference at all? I wondered this recently when I sent a prayerfully thought-out email meant to encourage a friend, only to have it met with an angry response. My immediate reaction was a mixture of hurt and anger. How could I be so misunderstood?
Before I responded out of anger, I remembered that we won’t always see the results (or the results we desire) when we tell someone about how Jesus loves them. When we do good things for others hoping to draw them to Him, they may spurn us. Our gentle efforts to prompt someone to right action may be ignored.
Galatians 6 is a good place to turn when we’re discouraged by someone’s response to our sincere efforts. Here the apostle Paul encourages us to consider our motives—to “test our actions”—for what we say and do (vv. 1-4). When we have done so, he encourages us to persevere: “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people” (vv. 9-10).
God wants us to continue living for Him, which includes praying for and telling others about Him—“doing good.” He will see to the results. By Alyson Kieda
REFLECT & PRAY: We can leave the results of our lives in God’s hands.
Meeting Needs – Your Spouse or God?
|One of the ways that I see couples get into trouble is when they expect their spouse to meet needs that God intends to meet. For example, if I expect Nancy to love me unconditionally, she can’t — and won’t. But God can, and will. If Nancy expects me to always be there for her, I can’t and won’t, but God can and will. If I expect Nancy to always understand me, she can’t and won’t—but God can and will.|
So what about you? What needs are you expecting your spouse to meet that God wants to meet? Don’t get discouraged, because we all can fall into the unreasonable expectations trap. When we do, we can get frustrated, discouraged, and angry, all because we are looking for something that is not there. Honestly, if I could keep my mind focused on God and let Him meet my deepest needs, my marriage would take a giant step forward—and so would my relationship with God.I need to do a weekly inventory of my current pressing needs. If I write them down and put a “G” by the ones God wants to meet, it changes my perspective and my attitude. When I believe God won’t let me down, I allow Nancy to meet the needs as a wife that God has equipped her to meet.
Today’s One Thing: What are you expecting your spouse to do in your life that only God can do? Let God do it!
Content for the weekly inspirational bulletin is provided by Lyle Dietrich.