Some of my greatest blessings and annoyances in life deal with the same thing – people. Just when someone in my life upsets me so much that I want to scream, someone else comes along and blesses and encourages me more than I could have ever imagined. As much as I hate to admit it, we all need to have others in our lives to thrive and do well. We all desperately need others in our lives for us to be mentally and physically healthy. Strange, isn’t it, but those who bring us our greatest joy can also cause our deepest pain.
Many times the closest people around us are the greatest source of pain, hurt and resentment in our lives at one moment while in the next they are our richest blessing, joy and encouragement.
Life can be a messy thing because of people.
That’s why, when Jesus came with the message of the kingdom, He admonished us to focus on two things:
1. Love one another.
2. Forgive one another.
The truth is that both of these admonishments are vital parts of a healthy life. We must decide to intentionally love and forgive those around us. People are messy. We all have our hurts, wounds, baggage and struggles in tow as we encounter each other. We all have our guards up from previous hurts. We all have our ears tuned to listen for offense. The cure is love and forgiveness.
As I write this I think of those who are in need of forgiveness. I think of those that need to feel the love of other believers.
Love and forgiveness.
Both are only done as we allow God to work through us. The greatest miracles of your life will come as you love and forgive. The greatest changes in lives around you will come because you love and forgive. They are the very heart of God, the very things we love about Jesus, the very things the world most needs, the two things those we encounter most need from us.
Let’s make this year a year of love and forgiveness to those we encounter in this journey we call life.