By Rick Warren
December 10, 2012
"If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them." (Luke 6:32 NIV)
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If you only love on and off like a light switch, you do not love others like God wants you to love. Jesus said, "If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you?" (Luke 6:32 NIV)
His point is this: Anybody can love those who love them. Becoming a master lover means you learn to love the unlovable. It's when you love people who don't love you, when you love people who irritate you, when you love people who stab you in the back or gossip about you.
This may seem like an impossible task, and it is. That's why we need God's love in us, so we can then love others: "We know and rely on the love God has for us" (1 John 4:16 NIV).
When you realize how much God loves you -- with an extravagant, irresistible, unconditional love -- then his love will change your entire focus on life. If we don't receive God's love for us, we'll have a hard time loving other people. I'm talking about loving the unlovely, loving the difficult, loving the irritable, loving people who are different or demanding.
You can't do that until you have God's love coming through you. You need to know God's love so it can overflow out of your life into others.
Love must become your lifestyle, the habit of your life. But it starts with a decision. Are you ready?
Your life is worth far more than you think, and by learning to love others with the love God gives you, you will have an influence far greater than you could ever imagine. If you will commit to this, you will experience love as God means it to be -- filled with hope, energy, and joy.
My prayer for you is "that your love will grow more and more; that you will have knowledge and understanding with your love ..." (Philippians 1:9 NCV)
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