May 17: “Love Forgives”

5 Minute Read + Scripture readings

Today’s Bible Reading:

Numbers 26
Psalms 69
Isaiah 16
1 Peter 4

Today’s Bible Verse(s):

“Above all, maintain constant love for one another, since love covers a multitude of sins.”
1 Peter 4:8 (CSB)

Reflections on Today’s Bible Verse(s):

Some Christians are carrying wounds that might not be fully healed until they get to Heaven. What makes those wounds so painful and devastating? They were the wounds of someone they thought was a friend.

I could write a book on hurtful things that I have seen and endured behind the scenes at various churches. I have observed Kim get hurt. I have counseled church members who were horribly hurt. The pain is intensified when it comes from someone that we thought were devout Christians and who we trusted. We let them into our hearts and they wounded us.

But, if we are completely honest with ourselves, there have been times that we have hurt others, too. Whether we hurt someone intentionally or unintentionally doesn’t matter. We’ve hurt people.

Someone has said that a church is like a bunch of porcupines huddled together on a cold winter’s night. Eventually, someone is going to get jabbed.

So, what can be done about all this hurt? What can Jesus-followers do to make it easier to forgive and move on?

1 Peter 4:8 (CSB): “Above all, maintain constant love for one another, since love covers a multitude of sins.”

If we truly love someone else, we won’t hold onto the hurt they caused us. And if others truly love us, they won’t hold onto the hurt that we caused them, either.

So, how can we develop that kind of Christlike love that “covers a multitude of sins”, especially when we’re talking about someone who has hurt us? Here are some ideas:

  • Reflect on how much God loves you. You cannot give what you do not have. As you begin to bask in the unconditional love that God has for you, you can give it to the person who hurt you.
  • Pray for the person who hurt you, specifically thanking God for some of their good traits. (Whether you want to admit it or not, they do have at least one good trait.)
  • Acknowledge that the person who hurt you is flawed. But, then humbly acknowledge to the Lord (and yourself) some specific areas in which you are flawed, too. Then, pray for God’s grace to help you and the person who hurt you to be made more like Jesus.
  • If we truly understood what Hell is like, we wouldn’t want our worst enemy to go there. So, if the person is lost who hurt you, pray with all your might that God would save and forgive them … and then be open to the fact that the Lord may use you to give them the best news they’ve ever heard. Share the Gospel with them.

* * * * * * * * * *

Lord Jesus, You once said that the two greatest commands are to love the Lord with everything I’ve got and to love my neighbor as I love myself. Please develop within me a love for You and others. I don’t want to hold onto hurts and I know that love enables me to overlook them. Help me to love others. Amen.

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Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

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I have an incredible wife that God gave to me on May 10, 1997. Since then, the Lord has blessed us with three wonderful boys. I am also the pastor of the First Baptist Church of Polk City, Florida.

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