Challenge 66: Love Patiently

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My 6 year old loves omelets. If he could eat one every day, he would. Last week when I agreed to make the semi-labor intensive treat, he kept asking me, “Is the omelet ready yet?” “No, Nathaniel. It will get ready quickly once I begin cooking it, but I have to first prepare the ingredients so I can cook the omelet.” It frustrates me sometimes that this is our constant conversation. He asks for an omelet. I clean and chop the ingredients. He asks is it done. I explain the preparation before the cooking. And then I sigh. But as we went through another round of this last week I saw that Nathaniel is like we are with God.

We have been waiting for our ministry or job promotion, a spouse, a financial breakthrough or some other promise we believe the Lord has for us and we. can’t. wait! We want what’s ours now. Yes, God has promised us something, but we still have to go through the preparation process before we get it. We may have to learn to speak gently, be faithful to assignments, submit to authority or mature in some other way. He wants us fully equipped so we can fully appreciate the promise. Otherwise, our promise, just like an omelet with missing ingredients or undercooked, just won’t be fulfilling. If we receive our promise before we are ready our life won’t be what God intended.

Sometimes God uses us in someone else’s preparation process. In this instance, it may be the process of being broken from the bondage of not knowing how to receive love. The person has been wounded so often for so long, she doesn’t know what genuine love is. We have to continue to extend ourselves, and ignore the lack of gratitude, the suspicious looks, and the refusals to accept our love offer so she gets a picture of what unconditional love is. She needs to witness patience and faithfulness beyond the pages of Scripture. She needs to see love in action. We may have to alter the way we show love, like send the person a token gift remotely, if her rejection becomes too much, but we likely have to press on. We may be the one person God has chosen to help someone finally get her breakthrough. If we stop, the person may remain in the bondage longer than she has to. Remember we are ambassadors of Christ, reconciling folks back to God and His love design (2 Corinthians 5:20-21). We don’t know how God may use us. We just need to be available so He can use us.

Take a Risk Challenge: This week pray for God to reveal to you the person who has rejected your kindness to see if this is the one He would like you to be integral in helping break the chains of rejecting love. Helping someone freely receive love is a radical act of love.

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