Sunday, January 15, 2017

January 16, 2017

"Love must be honest and true. Hate what is evil. Hold on to what is good. Love each other deeply. Honor others more than yourselves." Romans 12:9-10

Who doesn't want true love? Who wouldn't benefit from it? What church couldn't use more of it?

True love is hard to find. Maybe that is because it is hard to do.

In these two verses Paul gives us perhaps the most concise description of true love found anywhere - even more concise than I Corinthians 13.

Life is all about relationships and therefore, love is essential. God wired you to thrive within loving relationships but sin infected your nature with selfishness and selfishness is the great "anti-love".

So, the reason why it's hard for you to love others is because you love yourself more. Until you want to love more than be loved you will struggle with true love. Wow, that's honest!

Perhaps that's why this verse describing true love begins by demanding honesty. Until you are honest about your lack of love how can you ever hope to honestly love?

Selfish love is manipulative. It always look for an edge or an angle to get what it wants. When you are angling for what YOU want you will not be interested in what others want. Self-love is the "anti-love". Insincere love uses people rather than serves them. When others feel used by you not only do they not feel loved by you, it is demeaning to them. No one wants to feel like an object.

How do you get over the self-love so you can love others with a sincere love?

Back to the honesty! True love begins with repenting to God for your self-love. Call it what it is - SIN. The root of all sin is selfishness and that must be dug out by the root! Only the God of perfect love can do that.

The antidote for self-love is God's love. Maybe that is why Jesus commanded us to "Love God with all your heart and love your neighbor as yourself". Until you love God more that you love yourself it will be impossible to love others and not try to manipulate them. Actually, you will try to manipulate God, too!

Get over it! Root out SIN and get sincere!