1Corinthians 13:4-8 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.
e need to strive to produce God's love toward everyone; however, a balance must be maintained in using these definitions in close or intimate relationships with people. You can give godly but you can't always expect it back. The response you receive may have only a little human love. For instance you should love a person who is a thief, pray for him, teach him if he'll let you, have hope in eternal heaven for him and care for him as in the story of the "Good Samaritan" (Luke 10:30-37). But you can't put all your trust in him, you must move with caution keeping your feelings under control. You can't allow that person into your life to the point they have influence over you. If you begin to think and act like them they will rob you of everything God has given you. However over time, if while seeking God, the thief is really trying to be a changed person they can earn your trust. Now with God, you can put all your trust in Him all the time. And through obedience to His Bible you can live in a way that other people, as well as God, can put their trust in you. It works the same way for hope. To always have hope in God to fulfill his promises is mandatory for Christian's growth, especially so because many times God is the only one who can change things. You also can have hope in your heart for a person to change his ways and give up their life of sin, but God gave each person free will to make their own decisions. However, if it's a covenant relationship (one that God has a promise attached to, like a child, grandchild or close family member), if you seek and believe God as the Bible teaches I believe the promise will be yours. God is attentive to our prayers.
Persevering in love doesn't mean to let anyone walk all over you for as long as they want to keep doing it. God doesn't expect you to live in torment. I keep it under control this way. If a person will listen and grow from biblical lessons they can walk on me a lot, I have God's strength and I know they will eventually stop once they get enough of God's faith to act better. But when they refuse to learn and become rebellious to God's word they eventually don't want to be around me anymore, they usually leave and I am free knowing I've done all I could do for them. Then God moves me completely out of their area to a peaceful place. I remember them in my prayers daily, send birthday cards or Christmas presents to remind them that I love them, but I put my efforts in other places where God needs them.
You can check the progress of your teacher-student relationship by what I call a person's "bounce back time". It's the length of time between lessons where a person either accepts what you say or rejects it. Is it hours or days before you can comfortably approach them with another lesson?
The "bounce back time" is because of what they are learning. It allows the Holy Spirit time to call them to accountability and prompts them to make a decision to make a change in their thinking and/or their lifestyle. This is usually a disturbing time for them because most people believe they are OK with whatever they think, say or do, especially if things seem to be going well with their life.
Some people get alone for minutes, hours and even two or three days, be patient with them. They may be really angry, hurt or just thinking, trying to work things out. They just need time for the Holy Spirit to help them with God's truth that you planted in them.
During this time be kind, talk but stay off the subject. You can answer any questions they may have but let them be the aggressive one. As you observe, watch for the time they are over the conflict in their mind and they either want more or you can comfortably give another lesson. From the time they left the lesson to the time they will accept more is their "bounce back time". These times should grow shorter until you can introduce reading the Bible together, going to church, counseling, etc. Bounce back times will vary according to how much change a person has to make and how willing they are to give up and do things God's way.
By lessons, I mean telling them something from the Bible. With someone who is rebellious or influenced by demonic spirits start by telling them something I call "life according to the Bible". Which is finding something you have seen at work or in the news etc. or something that a person (anybody) does that needs to be approached in a more godly way. After telling what the action was add how it should have been done or the penalty that the Bible says they will pay for their actions. Base your additions on the "do this or don't do this" scriptures or the "reap what you sow" scriptures. They're found throughout the Bible. Many of them are in the Book of Proverbs and the blessing and curse scriptures in Deuteronomy 28, so study. Always make what you do a positive uplifting time, never demanding anything in return. Use the statement of fact attitude and you don't need their attention to express your thoughts. Your just getting the word into them.
The story doesn't have to be perfect or be something of great interest to them. It's sharing your knowledge and fitting it into their time-slot. Don't be preachy, simply relate something godly and let the Holy Spirit work on them.
Sometimes you can get a person's attention by telling an interesting scripture such as: Proverbs 20:29 the glory of young men is their strength, gray hair the splendor of the old. My point is scripture delivers people from the bondage of Satan. It doesn't even have to pertain to anything in their situation; it still works. So I try to get scripture into a conversation wherever I can. A good story can do the same thing. There is usually more time to tell a story at the dinner table, something like:
- Elisha and some men went to the Jordan and began to cut down trees. As one of them was cutting down a tree, the iron ax-head fell into the water. "Oh, my lord," he cried out, "it was borrowed!" The man of God asked, "Where did it fall?" When he showed him the place, Elisha cut a stick and threw it there, and made the iron float. "Lift it out," he said. Then the man reached out his hand and took it. From: 2Kings 6:3-7
- You might find the story in 2Kings 6:8-23 uplifting as well, which describes God opening the eyes of Elisha's servant, so he can see the army of God all around them.
- This is one of my favorites because it shows the power of God, and that He is a jealous God. (Exodus 20:4-6)
The Philistines captured the Ark of the Covenant and put it into Dagon's temple and set it beside Dagon, who was the principal god of the Philistines. When the people rose the next day, there was Dagon, fallen on his face on the ground before the ark of the LORD! They took Dagon and put him back in his place. But the following morning when they rose, there was Dagon, fallen on his face on the ground before the ark of the Lord! His head and hands had been broken off and were lying on the threshold; only his body remained. From: Isaiah 5:1-4
If you don't know much scripture, pray and use what you know. If you need something to say on a particular subject, get a concordance and look up scriptures. Be sure to read the full scripture so that you use it in the right context. I felt I didn't know much scripture; so one night I searched my mind for everything I knew about the Bible. Even though I couldn't quote much I found that I knew a lot more than I thought. So I started using what I knew, looking up scriptures, getting the full meaning through prayer and correcting things I was wrong about, then I kept adding to my list of what I knew.
Next, in your relationships always check yourself as to how you act and what you say. Use the "Love Is" list from above (1Corinthians 13:4). Also use the following scriptures to check that you love people God's way.
Romans 13:8-10 let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has fulfilled the law. The commandments, "Do not commit adultery," "Do not murder," "Do not steal," "Do not covet," and whatever other commandment there may be, are summed up in this one rule: "Love your neighbor as yourself." Love does no harm to its neighbor. Therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.
Matthew 7:12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you...
Every thing you say or do should have an after effect on a person that they are not harmed in any way, mentally, physically or emotionally. Always treat them in a way that they know more about God because of your actions and speech.
I repeat what I wrote above: God's love is not determined by feelings. Feelings result because you use God's love on people. God deepens your feelings of love for people, even those who actually hate you, when you love them his way. It's not the world's way of loving but it's the most satisfying feeling to know you love everyone in the world no matter how they feel about you. God feels that same way about us. Corrective love or what's call "tough love" for children falls well within this category because with out proper correction a child is harmed. Correction will also help adults if they will take it, but you have to be more cautious in handling them.
1Timothy 5:1-2 Do not rebuke an older man harshly, but exhort him (exhort means to urge earnestly by advice or warning) as if he were your father. Treat younger men as brothers, older women as mothers, and younger women as sisters, with absolute purity. (Love or fairness etc., such as with the fruit of the Spirit)
Galatians 5:22-23 ...the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
God's knowledge moving through us will stop Satan and the problems he causes. It will turn hardship and problems completely around in prosperity and peace. A lack of God's knowledge has opened the door for disaster in many people's lives; God has a plan that will shut that door and give you peace and joy. Salvation is what gives you access to God's help in fighting those battles. It gives you the authority to use every scripture in the Bible against the evil that is robbing you and your family of joy and happiness. Salvation through the blood of Jesus will position you in a place to use the same authority that Jesus used when he healed the sick and delivered people from all kinds of demon control.
Luke 5:17 One day as he was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law, who had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem, were sitting there. And the power of the Lord was present for him to heal the sick.
If you haven't repented of your sins and given your heart to the Lord, please do. You will receive God's power so you can meet your problems head on. You will have access to miracle power and God will use you to deliver those around you. Then the Holy Spirit will reveal scriptures and teachings from the Bible, like those are in this article, to help you resolve any problem that arises. Please give your heart to God or renew your relationship with Jesus now.
Romans 10:9-10 That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved.
For help please see our Salvation Prayer page.
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