I really struggle with my arrogance on times. If someone shows me respect, loyalty and honesty then they are a friend forever. I would pretty much go to the ends of the earth for them. And yet if someone I meet doesn't show me these things then I really struggle to love them. Who am I to be so arrogant? Who made me judge?
I was talking to my mate today about how I can be more like Jesus in this area. I so want to be a person who is known for the unconditional love that I show ALL people.
We started to then unpack. We need to choose to assume the best in people. Even if the best is not always what someone gives, which one of us gives our best all of the time? Then we need to accept that we will get cheesed off, frustrated and angry with people. Jesus did, when his disciples couldn't stay awake for him, when he told Peter "get behind me Satan". When he smashed up the temple! But the difference is that he then died for every single one of them!
See it is not the reaction of frustration and anger that is wrong. It is what we do with that anger. We may need to even challenge people on the way they treat us but every time we do, we must do it to build them up and not to make us feel better.
Then I picked up my sword and God revealed this to me. He told me that the gifts of the spirit are so much less powerful when the fruit is not present in a persons life. Have you ever known anyone like that? They are so powerful in the gifts and yet the fruit is not there! no patience, no kindness, no self control.......... And then God showed me 2 Peter 1 v 5-9 in the message:
"So don't loose a minute on what you have been given. Complimenting your basic faith with good character, spiritual understanding, alert discipline, passionate patience, reverent wonder, warm friendliness and generous love. Each dimension fitting into and developing the others. With these qualities active and growing in your lives, no grass will grow under your feet, no day will pass without its reward as you mature in your experience of our Master Jesus. Without these qualities you cannot see what is right before you, oblivious that your old sinful life has been wiped off the books."
Lord Jesus help me and I will play my part on the journey to becoming of good character, having spiritual understanding, being disciplined, patient and generous in love. Allow me to see the things that leave me in reverent wonder of you and help me not to miss that which is right in front of me!