In 3rd grade I was IN LOVE with Tony Green. He was so handsome, I could hardly keep my jaw closed when I looked his way. He had the cutest smile & the most incredible green eyes -- to match his last name. When I found out that those eyes were "wandering eyes" and that he'd been passing notes in school to several of us 3rd grade girls, the LOVE turned to HATE pretty quickly. I took his school picture, drew devil horns on his head, drew a pitchfork beside him, gave him a demonic mustache and goatee & stuck a push pin through both of his eyes! And, then I tucked that picture away in my "treasure box" to be discovered years later when I was all grown up.
How does it go so quickly from LOVE to HATE. And, what's the difference between LOVE and LIKE? Can we LOVE people who are clearly unlikeable to us?
I'm one of those "grown up women" who is totally transformed into that same totally insecure, grossly skinny, unattractive pre-teen girl that I used to be... at the thought or mention of numerous things. Memories of falling in love with the neighbor boy when I was 12 still get me! How could he NOT see how awesome I would be for him in the years to come. I vividly remember feeling as if I would die when overhearing some of the youth group boys saying I looked like a little kid in my bathing suit in front of that boy. If they could only see me now - LOL!
There are several types of love...the family kind, the romantic kind, etc. I'm pretty sure my love for Tony Green and the boy next door (who shall remain nameless in this post) would be considered "puppy love" even though it hurt like everything when the end came! My love for my family is incredibly strong. I might get frustrated or feel hurt by things that they do. But, there's never any doubt of my love for each of them.
But what about loving others that I don't particularly LIKE... how does that work? Is it the person I don't LIKE or is it maybe something they have done to me or a friend? Is it that they are better at something than I am that causes me to feel as if I don't particularly LIKE them? Do they hold different values than I do? Have they made choices that I don't agree with?
For all of us, there will always be people who "ruffle our feathers." And, I believe that whether we love them or not is a personal choice. As a Christian, I try to find my guidelines in the Bible. And, I pray about loving people whom I don't really like all that much. I've grown to believe that I don't have a choice. That I was commanded to love all of God's children. I love them by leaving the judgment to God & loving them without demanding they meet a list of requirements. It's a love that I never would have understood as a child. It's a love that's hard for me to do but, easy for me to allow God to do through me when I'm in constant contact with God.
God remains faithful! He fills my heart with love for someone who is very hard to like. How do I know? Because I am living that life now... 24/7.
Linked with the Nesting Place community through the write31days challenge, October 2014 - post No 30.
Just a glimpse of me...
- Do you ever feel STUCK? In 2000, I began looking for answers to some tough questions in my life. I'd searched high & low and finally conceded to search the promises found in the Bible. Those promises have sustained & guided me through the loss of a parent, the struggle with anxiety & depression, the loss of a valued relationship and so much more! I've found joy amid the pain. And, I want to share it with you!