Thoughts for Thursday – Loving Those That Are Difficult to Love 

Love

Good morning, everyone! I hope you are all having a great week. I’m thankful for this day. The opportunity to see new blessings and mercies is something to never take for granted. I’m thankful for all that God will do today.

I work as a special education teacher. I have been in this role for four months and while it has its challenges, it’s also a very rewarding position. One challenge I had recently was working with an aggressive student. He doesn’t like doing work and would hit and headbutt me. Two weeks ago, I was working with this student and I became increasingly frustrated. So much so that I had to take five minutes to myself. While on my break I prayed and asked God to help me. I told God how I felt like I had hit a wall and I wasn’t getting through to my student. I needed some direction. Suddenly I felt the Holy Spirit lead me to 1 Corinthians 13, also known as The Love Chapter. I read it in it’s entirety and kept coming back to the middle verses.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.”

1 Corinthians 13:4‭-‬7 NIV

It occured to me that I wasn’t showing my student the same love that the these verses describe. I wasn’t very patient or kind. I was getting easily angered. I asked God to help me put his word into practice and to show this same love to my student. My student’s behavior intensified the next few days. But no matter how worse it got, I did my best to be patient and kind and not get frustrated with him. I’m happy to say that his aggression is subsiding and it’s not as bad as before.

Sometimes showing love to those who are hard to love is…..hard. For me, God wants me to love my students, cover them with prayer, and bring out the best in them. I know that when I show them love it represents the same love that God showed me when he sent his Son Jesus to die for me on the cross for my sins. This reminds me of something that Jesus taught about.

“But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them.  And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same.  And if you lend to those from whom you hope to receive back, what credit is that to you? For even sinners lend to sinners to receive as much back.  But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil.  Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful.”

Luke 6:32‭-‬36 NKJV

Loving those that love us is easy. We don’t truly know what it means to love until we are face to face with someone who is difficult to love. I desire to be like Jesus so I’m going to love as he has instructed to love. I know he will give me what I need in order to love others just like he did for my student. He will do the same for you as well if you allow him to. Ask God to help you love that difficult person in your life. Who knows? Perhaps that love will be a catalyst for change. In the person and/or in you.

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