I have a confession to make. I have a hard time with prickly people. You know the kind of people I mean; those who are cranky, apt to complain instead of rejoice. People who, make you feel like you are hugging barbed wire.
Most of the time I can separate myself by remembering that the Prickly People are also Broken People. People who have been hurt by others, life’s circumstances, etc. The Broken and Prickly People (B&PP) have yet to release their hurts and wounded spirits to God so that His Perfect Healing can make them whole.
Then there are other times, when I feel my patience waning and my desire to “give them what-for” washes over me. I am not proud of myself in those moments.
I struggle with the B&PP’s outlook because it differs so much from my own. I have given my hurts to God over the last 20+ years. Some have been easy and others have been more difficult and have required counseling. Why can’t the B&PP give their issues over to God like me? It is not something I am proud of thinking.
That is where Grace and Love come in. God was full of grace with me as I was a B&PP and I need to extend that same Grace to other B&PP. Romans 5:8 says, “God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” This love that God felt for us then is the same love that we are to offer to others now. It’s a love that is sometimes easy and more often times difficult to live out.
Then again, I have heard that whenever “Love” is used in Scriptures it is synonymous with God Himself. If I am to be Christ-like then my name should be synonymous with Love too.
“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a, 13).”
To that end, this is my prayer for you and for me: “May God Himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul, and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful and he will do it (1 Thessalonians 5:23-24).”