Tag Team for Jesus Christ
Love Like You've Never Been Hurt
Lots of action going on here in our neck of the woods, and I don't think it's an accident. We live way out in the country in a cul-de-sac. All of these things happened in just one day, and it was day before yesterday: our neighbor caddy-cornered was bit by a copperhead snake, had to go to the E.R. and said the whole ordeal and the pain that went with it was "much worse than having a baby." The same day, the neighbors at the end of the road were cautioned by their dog, "Oloff" that there was a copperhead snake in their yard; so they were able to take care of that with no harm or injuries to the dog or anyone else. Then, across the street there was an eleven year old boy, bless his heart, standing on the edge of the road, looking pitiful in the heat of the day, holding up a sign that read, "Please help us with our puppy!!!!!"
My husband happened to be out in the yard and saw the boy and his sign, so he walked over and (long story short) found out the pup was a stray. (We get a lot of those out here and seems like Georgie and I are always the ones involved before it's over it for some reason. HA! Georgie was the pup’s hero and all was well. Last night I was going to sleep and was thinking about how Adam and Eve did what they wanted instead of what GOD wanted, and so did everyone since then, and that's why we all needed someone to come and follow GOD and say to Him, "Not My will, but Thine be done."
I wondered how the Lord wanted me to tie all this together. He put it on my heart how all these things go together in Matthew 19:16 to the end; but focusing on verse 19 after a man came to Jesus and asked Him, "What good thing shall I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus told him to "keep the commandments." They guy asked, "Which ones?" Jesus replied, "You shall do no murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not bear false witness; honor your father and your mother; and you shall love your neighbor as yourself." The guy said he did those things; but later on he goes away sorrowful because he wasn't willing to give up some things he was holding on to. It was a sad ending.
Going back to loving "your neighbor as yourself," that is difficult for me because of the pain I have endured in the past when I had a neighbor who was so jealous when all the neighborhood children would come to my house after school; when the same children would pile up in the van and go to church with us, and go pray for people with us, go caroling at Christmas time with us, and so on. I made a big mistake back then: I pulled out of the relationship with all those precious children just to try to keep the peace with my next door neighbor who wanted them to go to her church. I stopped making myself available, and they began piling up in her van to go to her church. I just couldn't be caught up in the contentions/divisions that jealousy games cause, so I felt like it was better for me to drop out of the whole scene altogether. I became a recluse for a few weeks and started giving in to depression because I missed the children with my whole being! About that time, we got called to a children's home to be house-parents quite a few hours away. We sold or gave away most all we had and off we went. The Lord used those children, since ours were grown, and since I pulled out of the neighbor situation. We worked there as long as we could physically, then moved here some years ago. The Lord showed me this morning, I have learned to guard my heart so well, I have managed to close the door off to a room He wants to reopen. I think of the plaque I've seen that reads: "Love like you've never been hurt." Like the boy across the street did when he took the puppy in as his own and tried to get help for it any way he could, may we love like that. He put on his sign, "Please help "our" puppy".
Father GOD, You're right as always! I hear You knocking Jesus once again on the door I have shut to the possibilities of being hurt. I apologize for thinking of myself, instead of allowing You to be Yourself through me. It's scary, but I'll let Your perfect love cast out my fears. Help me be willing to lay down my life (my fragile heart; my comforts) for the gospel's sake to help "my puppy"; "my brother"; "my sister." Strengthen me to endure what I must; guide me in all wisdom, love and discernment; and teach me to follow You in it I pray, in Jesus' Name, Amen.
GOD’s grace in Dawn Gwin 08-07-15
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