Loving others is a challenge! Love is doing unto others as you would have them do unto you. What does that mean? I love surprises and don’t mind celebrating my birthday at a restaurant where the servers sing “Happy Birthday” to me. I love being on stage! I couldn’t believe it when three (3) of my friends let me know that I was to never, never, never do this to them! Learning to love others required me to listen to the likes and dislikes of others. I did not insist on doing it my way, but learned to respect their wishes. Jesus did not intend for me to do to them the things that I like, but things they like. We learn the meaning of Jesus’ words in fellowship with others. We are blessed and God will use us to bless others if we are willing to “walk a mile in their moccasins.” The owner of the elegant condo had invited me to enjoy the peace and comfort of her home while she was out of the country. Another friend and I drove from the Atlanta area to the island off the Georgia coastline. I was looking forward to sharing this island sanctuary located on the beach with my friend who needed to “get away.” We had forged a friendship through years of ups and downs, prayed for one another, encouraged one another; together we had experienced emotional healing and spiritual growth. Opening the door I ushered my friend into the condo expecting her to experience the peaceful atmosphere and scene of the ocean framed by the doors on the far side of the room. I was not prepared for what I perceived as her dislike of the elegant accommodations. I use words to process issues and find being silent in the presence of others uncomfortable. There is a time to be quiet and a time to speak. Over the next few days of silence, God taught me that silence is sometimes necessary. Everyone’s idea of “getting away” is not the same. Loving my friend required me to be quiet.
Today I choose to love others as You have loved me, and pray that Your Love will control my behavior toward my family and friends. I resist the compulsion to talk when others are silent; I will not be dismayed when I can’t “fix it.” Lord, I thank you for your steadfastness to each of Your children. You will never leave us nor forsake us. You are always with us. You sent the Holy Spirit to be our Comforter, Counselor, Helper, Advocate, Intercessor, Strengthener, Teacher and Guide. You remind us that God’s grace is always sufficient, and He will direct our paths of righteousness. You are upholding us with your victorious right hand in the name of Jesus.