How to Love When You Don’t Feel Like It – by Sami Cone
It’s what makes the world go ’round, right? But what about those of us who don’t have love in our lives? Or worse yet, what if we love deeply, but get hurt by that love? Perhaps we’ve reached the point where we simply just don’t feel very loving anymore.
I can tell you from first-hand experience, I’ve been there.
How is it possible that in one simple moment, everything you once thought that you knew about love can be carelessly ripped away from you? And yet it happens. (Probably more often than us Christians would like to admit…)
So what do we do, not if, but when, ‘it’ happens.
When the tragedy knocks on our door.
When the doubt creeps in.
When we just become too tired to keep on keeping on.
But not in a Hallmark card sort of way. No ma’am. We love in a Jesus dying-on-the-cross kind of way.
God never promised love would be easy. He never promised love would be consistent without ebbs and flows. And He certainly never promised that we’d figure it out this side of heaven.
Can I get an ‘Amen’?
What God did promise is that:
- “I will love you with an everlasting love” (Jeremiah 31:3)
- that “I will never give you more than you can bear” (1 Corinthians 10:13)
- that “we love because He first loved us” (1 John 4:19).
And though we may never fully comprehend the how, why or what of the word ‘love’, we can rest assured that nothing we are facing is outside of the reach of our all-mighty, all-knowing, all-seeing Heavenly Father.
When we don’t know, we trust. When we don’t feel, we pray. And when we grieve, we go to the feet of the one who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our sins.
Believe me, I was in that place just a year ago. I questioned. I cried. I fell silent. But ultimately I realized one very important truth: It could just as easily have been me.
We are all sinners saved by grace and the moment we believe we are above such actions is the very moment the enemy can begin to attack.
I’ll confess, it’s not easy. But just as you find yourself asking God how you can possibly love the unlovely, He’ll tell you to focus more on Him and less on the what you feel like is unlovable.
While you may already believe these truths, convincing your children of the same can be challenging. Too often, they focus on the action that has hurt them rather than the person and circumstances behind the actual event.
I Share Because I Care, a DVD resource from Max Lucado, teaches this ever-important message of how to love when you don’t feel like it in such a charming way. Helping them see the root cause of why we do what we do will not only help little ones better understand how to love others better, but will ultimately help them take responsibility for their own actions and feelings.
While none of us are perfect, we serve a God who is, and we were made in His image (Genesis 1:27 ).
So for those of you who don’t feel loved or have lost your will to love, I encourage you to go back to the source of all love. Love is not a feeling, it’s an action. Too many of us assume love is an entitlement when it is actually a calling.
Are you ready to answer the call?
How do you help your kids to love others when they simply don’t feel like it?