I just stopped everything I was doing to share something.
I admit that a lot of my frustration, as it pertains to relationships of all kinds, came from me. I have loved people who were in a state that was “not loveable”. I have been frustrated when people didn’t act according to expectation (mine or theirs). I have been frustrated when I could not be who or what I wanted to be for someone else. All of these things stem from “I”.
When I really studied Gomer and Hosea, I cried. Hosea, a kingdom man, was a picture of Christ for his bride (you and I). She repeatedly did things that “broke” their relationship, and God repeatedly sent Hosea to bring her back. I think I’ve loved some Gomer-esq people. I think I have also been Gomer-ish. How grateful I am for a God who would send the Holy Spirit and always be there to receive me after messing up. Their very children’s names were Jezreel (God sowed), Lo-ruhama (She will be shown no compassion), and Lo-ammi (Not my people). Hello… clearly something up here. Gomer was a worldly woman with a past and a perplexing present *in those days. Her husband took her back after adultery, idolatry, and disgrace. God sent him back to get her. Talk about a level of forgiveness. While I am not in Hosea’s mind, I can only imagine.
How does this relate to me? I am called to love. You are called to love. Sometimes, I disobey. Other times, my ability to care for people crosses into my ability to be vulnerable.
God doesn’t call us to love people when they are easy to love. He calls us to love people. Period. My frustrations often stemmed from something I could control, my reactions to people and circumstances. While I am not saying it is easy, it is paramount that we learn to react differently and remember to love anyway. Sometimes that means loving from a distance, or letting go, or staying put and asking God to help you love them right where they(you) are.
“In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:” Philippians 2:5 (NIV)
This takes work. But if you filter you situation through grace, it’s a lot easier to handle.