The closer we get to God, the less we retaliate against the unloving behavior of others. We choose to retaliate when we forget the mercy of God in our own life. In our mind, even something as insignificant as an unreturned telephone call justifies retaliation. Irrespective of the nature of the offense, when we are close to God, our life becomes about Him—not us. Thus, when we encounter unloving behavior, we understand that the problem is between the offender and God—not the offender and us.

Furthermore, when we’re close to God, our realization of His mercy grows. Nothing that anyone else has ever done to us compares to the magnitude of the offenses we’ve committed against Him. Unbelievably, He loves us even though He also knows all of our future offenses against Him! His love challenges me to love like He does.

The greatest offense anyone commits against me can be forgiven and forgotten—just like He does for me. His mercy towards me teaches me to bury people’s offenses in the ocean of His love. I’m learning to let things go instead of letting them stop me.

When my life belongs to God, then so, too, do the offenses.

Jesus set the standard and He gave it to us in His Word. He said: “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. You are my friends if you do what I command you.” (John‬ ‭15:12-14‬) He loves us. He commands us to love others as He loved. He loved us to death. Are we loving each other the way He loves us? In Christ, we can forgive the past because He knows the future and He loves us in the present.

From the book, “Essential Faith” Volume 2 available on Amazon by clicking HERE .

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