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Love the betrayer....Friend?

A question has been lingering in my mind, what does it look like to love like Christ? I immediately thought of a passage of scripture in Mathews 26:50 that states “Jesus replied, do what you came for friend, then the men stepped forward, seized Jesus and arrested him.” What stands out to me is that Jesus identified Judas as (friend), I can’t help to think that if someone betrayed me one of the last words, I would use to identify them would be, friend. This is a prime example of how truly different our savior Jesus Christ is. In Isaiah 55:8-9 “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Unlike Christ, we don’t always know who our betrayers are, however when we find out we are asked to love them anyway. Wow, what a command, this week as I pondered the above-stated question my training ground erupted, with a circumstance that would provide an opportunity for me to learn. I made a decision at work, that my colleagues were not pleased with; to the point that they started to say negative things about me, and some changed how they treated me. At that moment I started to feel sorry for myself, The Holy Spirit quickly stepped in and reminded me that I prayed to learn how to love like Jesus. If you want to love like Jesus you have got to learn to love when you are uncomfortable when people say negative things about you when no one is on your side when you reach for a friend and they are the betrayer. How will you learn to love like Him if you don’t experience loving when it is not convenient for you? At that moment I heard Christ in my spirit saying my grace is enough, I love you, I am with you. A large part of hearing the voice of God in your spirit is not hardening your heart. The world tells us that when we experience hurt by others, we must self-protect even if it means cutting people off. Protect at all costs, protect, protect. On the other hand, the Lord says I am your protector come to me and I will provide what you need. In Matthew 5:43-45 “You have heard that it was said, love your neighbor and hate your enemy. But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and good and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.” My takeaway at this point is, God will do it. He will teach you if you are willing to stand in His truth; In Hebrews 3:15 it states “ As has just been said: Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion.” As children of God, we have come too far to turn back now. Let us not harden our hearts, even to the betrayers in our lives; that we may call friends. Stand in the place of truly knowing that the grace of God is enough; even to love when you don’t feel like loving. Love anyway, love can change the world one heart at a time. Do not run to the world for protection, do not lock your heart away, run to the one that provides the ultimate protection, and comfort, God.

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