I must admit I have slacked off a bit on my writing this month. I wrote a few drafts, but never got around to wrapping things up to post. So definitely going to be playing catch up to get 2 posts in before the end of February 🙂
For the last 2 weeks of February, I initiated a love “fitness” challenge with some of my Christ sisters. This exercise has caused me to be more intentional about loving on those in my world. Each day, I get to think more deeply of ways that I can challenge myself to change my usual routine so that I can bring goodness to others. And in this process I have learned that I need to keep growing in compassion. Interestingly I learned that compassion is a form of love (Thank You Jesus for never leaving me stuck in old mindsets. Thank You for making me a living testimony of Your great love)
One of the things I learned last year was that I had to become the love that I wished to see in others. Has it been an easy exercise? Of course not. Compassion is defined as “sympathetic pity and concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of others” (google).
Sometimes we struggle to love others due to selfishness or our inability to be attentive to the Holy Spirit’s prompts or due to our inability to properly love ourselves.
Growing up, I learned to manage a lot of things on my own (though not always effectively), yet that caused me to become a person who had a hard time seeking help from others and having issues being compassionate in various scenarios, especially when I felt that all they had to do was suck it up. I am grateful for Christ’s love and for growing in my understanding of it in the past 2 years. It has taught me to receive His grace and in so doing I have been learning to be compassionate to myself and from there my compassion for others has started to flow.
Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn - Romans 12:15
We are all God’s children, loved dearly and uniquely. This truth should humble us to pour out our very best to everyone whenever we have the opportunity to do so. This does not place pressure to become “besties” with everyone, because even Jesus had a select number of people in His inner circle. Yet we can love, respect and honor others as God desires us to and as He loves us.
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God”2 Corinthians 1: 3-4
I’ve asked myself, when I treat other people differently is that honoring to God? Does it reflect His love for me? Am I choosing to love my enemies as I love myself? Am I being intentional daily to find ways to bring His love and goodness to others?
'Love your neighbor as yourself.' - Matthew 22:39
I want to continue leveling up in all the Holy Spirit fruits and so I choose to continue to lay down my life, heart and mind so that Jesus through His Holy Spirit can continue to do a new thing in me each day. I am so grateful and blessed to be in such a beautiful environment right now. For the first time in my life I am planted and I have a confidence in Who watches over me and keeps me. I praise God for His church, here I have learned to access His Presence, to understand grace, to accept His grace and love and start to give it freely to others (this is my hearts greatest desire). I have been learning of the importance of laying down fear, pride, insecurity, doubt, worry about other’s opinions and continuing daily to step forward in faith and boldness to follow after Christ and trust His leading. And when challenges seek to cause doubt to make me question these choices to love God and others deeper, I will keep my eyes focused on my King and the price He willingly paid on the cross for me to become the righteousness of God ♥️
Thank You Mighty Father for Your great love. I am not deserving of it, but You pour it out freely upon me. Lord Jesus show us all the ways that we can continue to surrender our hearts and minds to You so that we can grow in Your love. Lord teach us by Your Spirit how to continue leveling up in the Holy Spirit fruits. Guide us Holy Spirit to love ourselves as You do so that we can be love to others in our world. Teach us to be good stewards of Your love and grace. I love You Lord God. Be Magnified in all that I am and do, mold me and refine me till all that’s left is You. In Jesus’ Holy Name I pray, Amen!
"“Here is a simple rule of thumb for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you; then grab the initiative and do it for them ! If you only love the lovable, do you expect a pat on the back? Run-of-the-mill sinners do that. If you only help those who help you, do you expect a medal? Garden-variety sinners do that. If you only give for what you hope to get out of it, do you think that’s charity? The stingiest of pawnbrokers does that." - Luke 6:31-34 MSG