Sunday, May 13, 2012

Galatians 5:13

13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love.
14 For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”
15 If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.

     Events in the news the past few months... even years... testify to how anger and hate destroys us and our neighbors.  Not just those in the house next door, but in countries near and far.  Families torn apart.  Marriages destroyed.  Friendships ended.  Wars started.

     Not long ago a friend and I were having a conversation about the concept of "loving your neighbor as yourself."  She interpreted it to mean that she needed to put others needs before her own.  That she should sacrifice self ~ herself ~ to make others happy.

     I disagreed.  If we are to love our neighbor as yourself... would we treat our neighbors like we do ourselves?  If we don't take care of our own needs... how can we help or care for anothers needs?  She responded by asking if that wasn't being selfish.

     How can caring for myself, so that I can care for others, be selfish?  I am not ignoring their needs, but I am recognizing that my needs are important also.  If I do not care for myself, tend to my needs... love myself... then it is not possible for me to care, tend or love others.

     We cannot give what we do not have.

     If we do not love ourselves... how can we love others?

22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.

1 comment:

  1. Sometimes loving ourselves is hard. Just the same you are right, we do need to recognise our needs.
    If you are in a plane, nursing a baby, and the oxygen light comes on you are instructed to first fit your mask, and then the babies, simply because you cannot be of any assistance if you have passed out. So .... first meet our needs (not wants) and then help others.


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