Love Is Hard Sometimes
Pastor Ben Spitler
But it really hit me last week, and I shared this in Sunday’s message, that love isn’t easy. Sometimes, maybe most of the time, love is hard. It’s likely why there isn’t more of it. It’s a lot easier to not love, to hate, to hold grudges, to avoid commitments, to react, to isolate, to look out for #1. The choice to love is not easy. But it’s God’s command to us. Love is what saves us and only love can save the world, stop the violence, end the vicious cycles of retaliation, keep marriages and families together. God’s love for the world, for you and me, wasn’t easy. It meant giving up the glories of heaven to come to earth. It included all the usual challenges and temptations we humans experience from birth to death, plus, for Jesus - constant demands, opposition, poverty, and ultimately a slow and agonizing death. Of course, God raised Him to life again! The story didn’t end at the cross. And God will raise us, too! Thanks to Jesus, the ending is happy and life goes on forever!
But until then, the love God calls us to may be hard sometimes. I say all that for two reasons. First, so that we don’t take God’s love for us for granted, like it was no big deal. It was a big deal! Second, so that we don’t underestimate the task of loving that God has asked of us, nor its importance. Love saves the world one life at a time. You and I are a part of that. It’s easy to sing about, harder to do. But with God’s help we can! And the key is experiencing God’s love for us every day!
I’ll leave you with this Word from 1 Peter, chapter 1 on the heels of this fourth Sunday in Advent whose theme was love-- 22 "Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart. 23 For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God." And, my friends, know that God loves you! He does! For real! Receive it and pass it on.
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