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Easy To Sulk, Better to Love

 

I was reading Job 23 and was reminded of a word brought by an elder at Joshua Generation Church. He shared about trusting God even when life seems so unfair. How often times, those that seem to be really obeying God and doing everything right, end up being given the biggest cups of suffering. Jesus is the perfect example of this.

This morning I had a discussion with my son Wesley about why I want him to learn to be self-controlled and loving even when things don’t go his way. I explained to him that love is not about being nice when you are given everything you want- that’s a selfish emotional response, though a harmless one.

Love is a choice. Love is pouring ourselves out in unselfish sacrifice, even when the very people you’re serving, are the ones causing you pain. Again, Jesus is the perfect example of this. I said to Wes, as his parent I have to decide that the best thing sometimes is not to give him everything he wants at the exact moment that he asks for it. Sometimes it’s necessary to ask him to wait or even for me to say no to him. My heart as his parent is to teach him, to model for him even, a loving response in these situations.

Abigail Bevan along with her husband Bret and their children Bethany and Wes

Abigail Bevan along with her husband Bret and their children Bethany and Wes

I want Wes to learn to love, to be unselfish and generous, even when he’s inconvenienced, confused or hurt. I want him to learn to communicate how he’s feeling, but in a way that is respectful. And then, if the situation remains the same, even after he’s explained why he doesn’t like the status quo, I want him to learn to accept with joy. It’s easy to accept with a sulky face and storm away to cool off. But that’s not loving. It’s not good for anyone involved.

It’s easy to accept with a sulky face and storm away to cool off. But that’s not loving. It’s not good for anyone involved.

Acceptance with joy is the understanding that even death is just a shadow. That suffering doesn’t have to cause us to live in crippling bitterness, fear or misery. Actually, with Jesus enabling us, we are invincible, nothing can touch us. Does this mean we will never experience heartache, pain, disappointment or fear? No. It just means these emotions don’t have to control us. We can choose to love despite these human gut reactions, like Jesus did in the garden of Gethsemane. It’s often not easy to choose love. Jesus experienced such trauma that He sweated blood. But then He CHOSE love. As one fully God but also fully man, He showed us it’s possible to choose Love in ANY situation.

Love is often really difficult, but it’s worth it. Choosing love means accepting a Peace and Joy that is able to defy circumstance. It means walking in an intimacy with God so full of romance and adventure and fulfillment that everything else in life becomes strangely dim. This is what we were created for. To choose love. To learn that love always wins. To learn to trust God that He’s good, even when He doesn’t seem safe.

 


ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Abigail is married to Bret and makes up one half of Team Bevan, an elder’s wife, homeschooling mom of two (busy) young legends, a dreamer and most of all a lover of Jesus. Raised as a pastor’s kid, Abby grew up with a passion for the lost, the Word and a heritage of God-chasers to embrace.   

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