Ephesians 5:1-2 (AMP) Therefore become imitators of God [copy Him and follow His example], as well-beloved children [imitate their father]; and walk continually in love [that is, value one another—practice empathy and compassion, unselfishly seeking the best for others], just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and sacrifice to God [slain for you, so that it became] a sweet fragrance.
It is LOVE day, but is it? God spoke the language of love when He sent His Son for us. His purpose was not just to die so we did not have to go to hell (hell was never supposed to be out destiny in the first place). His purpose was to restore us to our purpose. Salvation is Kingdom purpose. Salvation made us alive to grow and to become whole. Salvation is supposed to transform us. It is because of salvation that I can love others to seek the best for them.
Our relationships should point us back to our purpose. If we are new creations in Christ, then we are all called to the ministry of reconciliation. Whenever I see the word “therefore” in the Bible I like to go to the preceding verse to find out what the author is really trying to convey.
Ephesians 4:32 (AMP) Be kind and helpful to one another, tender-hearted (compassionate, understanding), forgiving one another (readily and freely), just as God in Christ also forgave you.
Jesus spoke the language of love when He laid down His life for us. He did it when He washed the disciples feet even though He know one of them was going to betray Him. He did it knowing that they would walk away from their purpose, just because He was not with them any longer.
Love forgives readily and freely. This is not the same as being a door mat and allowing to be abused or taken advantage of. You can stand up for yourself and not take on an offense. We can do something right and be wrong when we take on the mantle of self-righteousness.
I will give a personal example that happened not too long ago. I was having a morning, fussing about my teenage son. My husband has heard me get onto him about taking 20-30 minute showers before, and has supported me on this. My goodness, I am a 43 year old woman with hair that goes over half way down my back and I do not take showers that long! This particular morning he had an orthodontist appointment and figured he could push it further because he did not have to be at school. I wanted to go to the gym before, so I was having a moment. My husband responded to my moment with a ‘you are being dramatic’ comment. Warning to all you husbands: this does not calm down a woman, this actually will send her in a rage, and it did.
However, that did not make me right. My response to his wrong, made me even more wrong. Did he apologize and see the error in his ways? No. Does admit he did wrong? No. That does not matter. It is not his job to calm me down. Could he? Yes. It is not my job to teach him how to do that. All of this happens when we surrender to the Holy Spirit. My job is to forgive quickly and freely. I found it by getting in my Word. In 1 Corinthians 13:5 (AMP) it says, “Love…is not provoked (nor overly sensitive and easily angered)….” I had to apologize and let the other parts go.
To unselfishly seek the best for someone is to love them so great, that you would lay down your rights to keep peace. That you would lay down your fight so that they can get the recognition. That you would celebrate every mile stone that they make, even though you have been working so hard to get there yourself. Love sees the value and over looks the mistakes. Love gives grace to grow in the fullness that God wants for each other.
Father, thank you for being Love. Thank you for sending Your Son as the ultimate Valentine’s gift. Just like every day we should celebrate the wonder of His life, we should also celebrate the gift of His great Love. I repent for making it about me, for keeping an offense, for repeating a suffered wrong whether it was my perception of one or if one was actually intended. I choose forgiveness because you chose it first. I lay it at the altar today. Renew my heart to be that of flesh and do not let it become of stone. Thank you for helping me though your Word to remind me that my emotions should not rule me. Let me be quick to apologize and not take sides against my family of Christ. You are my Peace, my Shield and my Fortress. I belong to You. In Jesus Name, Amen.
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