To Love Like Him To Love Like Him You have heard that it was said, ‘An eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.’ But I say to you, Do not resist an evildoer. But if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also; and if anyone wants to sue you and take your coat, give your cloak as well; and if anyone forces you to go one mile, go also the second mile. Give to everyone who begs from you, and do not refuse anyone who wants to borrow from you. - Matthew 5:38-41 God doesn’t suggest to us that we should love people only when we want too. He doesn’t say if we like them, if its easy, if it suits us to love people. What he does do is commands us to love everyone. No matter who, no matter what, no matter how. We are told to turn the other cheek to show love when we are given hate, to show forgiveness and understanding when we are shown anger. This is not easy, has never been easy and never will be whilst we walk this earth. Because people are flawed and imperfect. We struggle with each other, we fight, and we can hurt and be hurt. It’s often when we are hurt by others that we hurt others. But this is not what He wants us to be, not how he created us to be. I will never fully understand what it means to love as God loves me, how he is capable of such forgiveness and love is incomprehensible. I was reminded of this recently, of God’s love and never-ending forgiveness for me. Although I meditate on this, on his love, when I worship or when I feel his spirit, it struck me in a new way what the love of God meant, the absolute gravity of the word love in relation to our father impossible Love Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. - Corinthians 13:4-8 Love is not asked of us it is commanded from us. To love each person as we want God to love us. To each person we are kind, we are patient and we are selfless. To each person we are asked to show grace and trust, and we are asked to hope for the best in that person to not just forgive them but to forget their past hurts in order to preserve relationship. This can be made easier to do when we truly love a person, when we want relationship with them. But when we are asked to show this ‘God like’ love to someone who has hurt us, to someone we must work to love, It’s made that much harder, and for me it seemed near impossible to be like this and show this love to someone who had hurt me. I remember laying in bed filled with so much anger and so much hate that the thoughts where consuming. Being unable to sleep or think of anything but how much this person had angered me. All these feelings did was poison me, my mind and my soul and this caused me to try push away from God, but He of course held on. A love that sets us free With hesitance to forgive anger manifested and I continued to pushed further away from God and further from who he wanted and who I wanted to be. So, I prayed. I asked God not only to give me peace but I asked him to rip the anger that I was holding on to out of me. I prayed for him to help me let it go, then I realised, as I prayed that by clinging so hard to these feelings and to these thoughts that I was allowing myself to drift further from who I was in Christ. With that drift and that change I felt incredibly lost. God gave the commandment to love, so that not only can we show that ‘God like’ love to others, not only so that we can be light and salt in this world. But because love sets us free. It’s liberating. Everything God has done for me is to protect and to prosper, to make me better and help set me free. To try and love like he asked me to is a never ending challenge and one of the hardest ones I believe I have faced so far, it is still something i will always be leaning to do better. But he has stood along side me helping pick me up when I fall with his never-ending patience, forgiveness and love for me. Through him I keep trying, I keep changing and I keep growing. Because all things are possible though He who strengthens me. This blog was written for The Greenhouse by Amy Piggott. To find out more about what we do here at The Greenhouse go checkout or Whats On page on our website.