In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus: Philippians 2:5

Q: What do you need to do to make Jesus love you more?

A: Nothing. That’s right. Nothing.

The problem is, from a human perspective, love doesn’t work that way in real life. We say we’ll love each other forever. We tell ourselves and our loved ones that nothing can ever change our love. But then real life sets in.

Affairs happen and destroy the intimacy that once protected our trust. Lies happen and shatter our faith. Health issues and financial calamity hits and we lose sight of what love is all about. No one ever walks the aisle with the hope that this union will last a year. ‘Til death do us part’ is the ideal we all hope for.

Love isn’t guaranteed in the parent/child relationship either. Children are abused or asked to leave their homes. They are abandoned or neglected by parents who are so wrapped up in their own lives and needs that they completely overlook the needs of their offspring. It’s unthinkable, but true.

Love dies when we fail to consider the feelings and value of the other person. Love dies when we fail to see ourselves as God sees us. If I see you as the special creation you are because of God’s fingerprints on you, then I’ll not hurt you. I’ll cherish and protect you at all costs, no matter what. If you love me as Christ loves you, then the mistakes that I make will be forgiven.

That’s how Jesus loves us. He loves us with an unconditional love that says no matter what you say, or where you go, or what you do, I love you. We may suffer consequences for our actions, but even then we are loved by the Father through Jesus Christ. We need only to confess our sins to receive forgiveness in order to feel his love in our lives.

Loving others as Christ loves us isn’t easy. In fact, in some situations it’s almost impossible. Sometimes we have to separate ourselves from those that hurt us for our own safety and their own good. But separating ourselves from other people due to abuse doesn’t mean we don’t still go on loving them through the power of the Holy Spirit in our lives. Loving others doesn’t always mean trusting others.

Love as Jesus loves. Love others based on who you are in Christ Jesus. Love others based on the fact that even though they may have hurt you, in reality they are God’s creation and his desire for them, like you, if for relationship.

PRAYER: Heavenly Father, I thank you for the unconditional, eternal and merciful love that you have for me. I look back at the path I’ve taken and see so many times when I’ve ignored your love and taken you places and let you see me do things that I never should have done. Still you love me! Empower me with your Spirit to love others in the same way you love me. Not for my sake but for yours. In your name I pray. Amen.