Summary: Last week I asked what love had to do with salvation, my relationship with God, my relationship with others and lastly, I asked what love had to do with my service for God. Today I’ll be focusing on what love has to do with various relationships in life.
WHAT’S LOVE GOT TO DO WITH IT?
Last week I asked what love had to do in some areas of our lives. First was salvation. Sending Jesus was how God showed his love for us. He was willing to let go of his Son and watch him get abused and mistreated and die-physically and spiritually-so that we would be able to have eternal life.
Jesus showed the extent of his love for us in being willing to become sin and have the Father turn his back on him and become completely separated from him.
Next I asked what love had to do with our relationship with God. If I have experienced God’s love for me it should compel me to live out my life in service to him. If my relationship with God is based in love then it will be a successful one.
What does love have to do with my relationship with others? Since we know God’s love for us and we are compelled to love God we should be compelled to love one another. 1st John 3 talks about how we ought to be laying down our lives for our brothers; and that means going out of our way to help them, be patient and understanding with them; doing to them as I would like to have done for me.
And lastly, I asked what love had to do with my service for God. If love isn’t the driving force behind what I do then it means nothing. It might benefit others to a degree but I will not be blessed because my motives are not pure and my attitude is not right. God is not pleased with what I do for him if it’s not done in love.
Today I’ll be focusing on what love has to do with various relationships in my life. What’s love got to do with it? Let’s find out.
What’s love got to do with my relationships?
1) With my family?
Think of how a person grows up and how it shapes them when they have been shown love vs. when they haven’t. Huge difference. Even when they’re in a home where they are shown love if it’s only by one parent and not the other there’s a big difference than if both are. And if the damage caused by the lack of love doesn’t get dealt with chances are that person will carry it over into their relationships with others. How can I conduct any of my relationships in love when I haven’t experienced it for myself? How can I show it when I haven’t seen it?
But, when I have been shown love that greatly affects all aspects of my life. When love is the foundation I will be shown encouragement, I will be shown mercy and forgiveness, I will be shown patience and understanding. All of these things will shape the person I become and will be carried into all my other relationships.
We learned last week that true love has to do with sacrifice; that’s what God showed us in sending Jesus and that’s what Jesus showed us in laying down his life on a daily basis for others. It’s no different when it comes to how I should treat my family. Love is rooted in selflessness while a lack of love is shown in selfishness. When we exhibit selfishness we bring harm to more than just ourselves.
Prov. 15:27, “A greedy man brings trouble to his family, but he who hates bribes will live.”
Greed is rooted in self-I want what I want when I want it regardless of the price I will have to pay to get it. When I’m greedy for dishonest gain I conduct my affairs with no thought or regard for how this will affect my family. So, when it all comes crashing down I look up and see how my family became a casualty of my war.
However, if I am one who hates bribes then I love my family. If I hate greed then I love my family. If I am against looking out for my own interests only and instead give careful thought as to how this decision will affect my family then I am showing love towards them. If I’m showing love then I’ll be doing my best to take care of my family.
1st Tim. 5:8, “If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever.”
This might seem like an extreme statement but what Paul is trying to convey is the importance of showing love toward my family. If I’m focused on love then I’m focused on providing for my family. And that doesn’t mean just materially; it also means being there for a family member when they need us to help or talk. I have a responsibility to my family; it’s part of faith living.