Tag Archives: Christlike character

Do Gossip and Negative Speech Grieve Our Hearts Like They Should?

Recently I was talking with someone and they begin to speak negatively about someone we knew. It grieved me and stirred my heart to pray for the person saying these things.

Both the speaker and the person spoken about are made in God’s image. Both are loved by Him—whether they know Jesus or not. Because of this, I want to know the heart of Father God for them because this is what my heart should reflect:

  1. God made them and saw that it was good.
  2. God sent His Son for them as well as you and me, providing a way for restoration and forgiveness of sin.
  3. God wants to do a transformational work in their lives too.

We have all sinned and needed Jesus to redeem us. This is no time to compare failures and sins. All need Christ every day to grow in holiness, and He calls us to love, share truth and pray. Continue reading

Vessels of the Father’s Love

Father God has given us each a free will. He has given us a beautiful choice to show love and honor to Him and others. Most often, we think we do this pretty well. Nonetheless, our hearts still contain impurities revealing self-focus and unhealed wounds.

Learned behaviors we thought were normal affect our daily lives. Ingrained habits plague us. We raise our voices at our children or siblings. We avoid those who rub us wrong. Or perhaps we find ourselves doing things to fulfill the need to be useful, or we assert ourselves wrongly to feel in control. Maybe we busy ourselves to avoid painful emotions.

Even in the many struggles we have, Father God is working to refine us into vessels of His love as we yield to Him.

We want to be ones who seek the heart of God, showing selfless love to all who we come near. Jesus confirmed this call. When asked about the most weighty of the Commandments, He said that loving God with all and loving others are the two from which all others stem (Matthew 22:36-40).

We realize our attempts to love remain tainted with self-serving. Showing love and honor is not automatic. Because of our tendencies toward selfishness and sin, we must seek to be intentional. We must be mindful of those around us.

If we ask, Father God will reveal ingrained behaviors and help us replace them with the fruits of the Holy Spirit. We must seek to be a blessing in every situation. It will take allowing Him to show us the depths of our souls.
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Loving Through the Pain

In any situation we are going through, even when we are being mistreated, the best question we can ask the Lord is, “How can I show love in this, to this person, to this organization?” and then do it: Show love even when we’ve been wronged or hurt. 

In doing this, you release the burden of focusing on the negatives or continuing to hold offense, and peace comes in like a flood as you learn to love! As you seek to love, focusing on that, you are thinking on those good, noble, excellent and praiseworthy things (Philippians 4:8).

Do we seek to love like Jesus loves through our trials, or do we continue to remain focused on ourselves? When we surrender our earthly cares, we can soar in the Spirit as if on the wings of eagles, living in the joy and peace that only come from Jesus!

If this seems an impossible task, first remember that the Lord is the only One who can love rightly. Ask Him to give you His superabundant grace and help you walk this out. Ask God to pour His love upon you so you can pour it out on even those who mistreat you. Lean into Him and remind your soul that “He who is in you is greater than he who is in the world” and you have overcome the world because Jesus has (1 John 4:4)!

If we will let Him, God will use the hard times and difficult people in our lives for our good: To make us more like Christ and in turn, we will experience greater peace, joy and love than ever before in our lives through it all.

Praise the Lord, He has a great future and purpose for us and it’s all about love: Letting Him love us and teaching us how to love Him and others like He loves!