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  • Lisa's Jars of Joy

Bankrupt Without Love

Updated: Jun 27, 2022

I recently had lunch with a lady I work with at Black Rock Steakhouse in Springfield, Vermont. The owners travel to Boston daily and bring back fresh meat and seafood at reasonable prices. I was looking forward to one of their delicious salads topped with blackened salmon. Parking my truck, I glanced at a one ton grey truck with a sticker that read, “I identify as a Prius.” I chuckled, but then thought about the articles I’d read where a person may now choose to identify as ‘they or them,’ and how people are deciding whether they want to be male or female or neither. Personally, this has been a head scratcher.

When this rapidly changing world becomes overwhelming, I go back to what I know for sure. I know for sure it’s no accident or coincidence I’m living in this world at this specific time. (Esther 4:14) I know for sure that human beings have inestimable worth to God and they are made in His Image. (Romans 5:8, Genesis 1:27) I know for sure He loves His Creation. (John 3:16)

God is the only One Who knows the prequel to every human being’s life and how they got where they are. My current job is not to be The Judge (Matthew 7:1-3) of others, but rather to love them right where they are; just like Jesus did when He walked in our shoes. Of course, discernment plays a huge role in navigating every situation we find ourselves in. Discernment, when used with the Holy Spirit’s guidance, has the ability to protect us from evil and ultimate harm.

It’s important to remember that when we point our fingers at others and pretend that only we have a corner on the truth, we play God and try to take over His rightful place as King, Creator, and even Judge. How we view and treat others reveals who we believe God is and who we believe we are. It’s given me great freedom to understand that while I don’t have the answers to the myriad of questions that confound me, I know Who does. He asks me to trust Him because He is Truth.

The God I serve is Perfect Love. There is no room for fear in His Love. (1 John 4:18) The Love God continually pours into my heart is a river that flows out to others. I choose to love my neighbor as much as I am able to love myself. God’s Love also teaches me healthy boundaries as I discern people and circumstances with His knowledge and direction.

We can choose to share our love with others as much as we are able to. The gift of meeting human beings right where they are on their journey is powerful and can be life giving. Forming relationships outside our comfort zones and allowing God to work through our personal vulnerabilities and through our stories can bring healing to many lives. Consistent and authentic prayer also produce miraculous results.

Holy Spirit, continue to show us what is true from Your Word and what it not. Help us discern clearly the Truth and to live in Your Truth. Loving someone is ascribing worth to another person at the cost to myself. Judgment is ascribing worth to yourself at the cost of another person. Help our lives to be a beacon of light and salt to all who cross our path. Help us to be more like Jesus. Amen.

God’s love is meteoric, His loyalty astronomic, His purpose titanic, His verdicts oceanic. Yet in His Largeness nothing gets lost; Not a man, not a mouse, slips through the cracks. How exquisite Your Love, O God! How eager we are to run under Your Wings, To eat our fill at the banquet You spread as You fill our tankards with Eden spring water. You’re a fountain of cascading light, and You open our eyes to the light. Keep on loving Your friends; do Your work in welcoming hearts. Psalm 36:7-10 MSG

Lisa M. Neal

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