Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Loving the Unlovely

We all have people in our lives who are easy to love. It is easy to give and show love to these people because it is a give and take relationship. We know that when we show love to them, they will in turn show love to us. Perhaps you can think of a person in your life right now like this - maybe your best friend, a parent, sibling or someone in your church.

It is natural for us to love those who love us. Even those of the world will love those who love in return. Jesus spoke of this in Mt 5:46, "For if ye love them which love you, what reward have ye? do not even the publicans the same?" There is no reward for this kind of love. True love is giving without expecting anything in return.

Jesus talked of loving the poor, loving those who could not return the favor. When He says poor, I do not think this necessarily means in a physical sense. Who is there in your life that is difficult to love? Someone that may not necessarily love you back? What about the awkward person who always seems to say the wrong thing at the wrong time?

Being a teacher, sometimes I am often faced with students that are difficult to love. A student once asked his teacher, "do you love all your students?" Honestly, there are some of my students I don't "feel" like loving. But, wait a minute! Love is not just some fuzzy feeling we get from being around a certain person. Love is a decision. I must make the decision to love that student who tries every possible way to wear out my patience. I must make the decision to love that awkward person others may see as a misfit.

True love is putting others needs ahead of my own. This may not be as difficult to do for some people, but what about the people I really don't like or care for? When we reach this point, we are beginning to show Christlike character. For it was Him who first loved us - just the way we were - poor miserable sinners with nothing to offer.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Pictures from Florida Family Vacation

Just after Christmas we were able to take a family vacation to Florida. We spent the first several days in St. Augustine and then headed further south to Orlando to meet up with my brother's family at Disney World. It was a rather crazy trip, but it was fun being on vacation with our entire family especially my niece and nephews. Here are some pictures from the trip:

Happy New Year!

This is a rather late New Year's post. I pray that all of my readers out there near and far have a very blessed New Year!

Last year, I picked a theme verse for the year, which I still have on my side bar. It was amazing as I meditated on this verse throughout the year, how the Lord showed me many new insights. At the beginning of the year I went through quite a few trials. I never really thought how this verse applied to the trials in my life. The Lord taught me how I needed to put that past behind me. There was nothing I could do to change any of the things that happened. I just needed to live it in the Lord's hands and move on with life.

I have been meditating on several verses trying to find one to focus on for this year. Over the last week, the Lord has been impressing upon me the need to grow my prayer life. It has been interesting how this topic has been coming up over and over. The last few weeks, I have been teaching my kids in my class on Sundays about prayer. I have chosen the following verse as my theme:

Acts 6:4
"But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the word."

I know this verse is talking about the role of the pastor, but what Christian does not need to give themselves continually to prayer? So, my challenge for this year is to work on my prayer life. I would encourage you in this area as well. 


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