Where Do You Draw the Line on Love?

WhereDoYouDrawTheLine“You hurt me too deeply!”

“He has offended me enough!”

“She has failed to listen to me one too many times!”

Should we love to a certain extent and then draw the line?

Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Corinthians 13:4 – 7 ESV

Love is not resentful. To simplify the greek word resentful in verse 5, it literally means to take an inventory. See, we might say, “I love her, but if she does that again…!”

That’s loving until the person disappears behind the wall of offenses you have towards them. The wall is built brick by brick, row by row, until all you see is the wall. A person surrounded by walls is a lonely person.

No, we aren’t to put a limitation on love. Not according to God’s standard.

Proverbs 10:12 tells us love covers all offenses.

1 Peter 4:8 tells us love covers a multitude of sins.

What if a person is in an abusive situation? Does that mean the person should stay in it? No. Wisdom would tell us otherwise. The difference is how our heart responds to that person.

We are still commanded to love and forgive the offender, but that doesn’t mean you need to remain in abuse.

As a friend of mine, Susan, has said: “There’s a difference between putting up a wall, and putting up a shield.”

Still, love is a choice.

To be a Christian means to forgive the inexcusable because God has forgiven the inexcusable in you. – C. S. Lewis

ABIDE IN HIS LOVE

As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. John 15:9 – 10 ESV

To abide in these verses means to stay. Stay in His love. If you get into your emotions with irritation or selfishness, choose to love, and you will be right back abiding in His love again.

When it comes to people, love is the fine line between what you want to do and what you need to do.

Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us. 1 John 4:11 – 12 ESV

There is no way we can do this on our own. It takes His power, but the choice is ours. If we choose to love, His love is perfected in us. In other words, His love is reproduced in us. God loved us, so He sent Jesus to die on the cross. We receive that love. When we abide in God’s love, then we “get on the cross” by giving up our wants and desires for someone else’s. Now others can receive that love. Through our attitudes and actions. All men will know that we are His disciples because of our love one to another!

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. 35By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another. John 13:34 – 35 ESV

Yes, we will fail, but as we choose to walk in love, remember God is also patient and kind with us!

Everywhere I turn for the past several weeks now I see that God is talking to the body of Christ about love. I’ve learned so much in the last several weeks while studying this topic, and I feel I’ve only dipped my toe in the water. I can in no way say all there is to say about biblical love, but to start with I highly recommend going through Katie Orr’s study Love: Bearing Witness to His Purpose.

Love is the fine line between what you WANT to do and what you NEED to do. [Tweet this]

 

How has God taught you about His love?


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9 thoughts on “Where Do You Draw the Line on Love?

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