Is Removing People From Your Life Self-Care?
the life of jesus
Jesus had different circles of relationships. He was first of all in unity and loving relationship with the other 2 members of the trinity – the Father and the Holy Spirit. He then had his closest 3 friends (Peter, James and John), after that his 12 disciples, then a larger crowd of followers. Those who were the closest to him were those he shared the most important moments of his life with. However, Jesus didn’t just cut out anyone who didn’t fit his moral values. In fact, quite the opposite! Jesus hung out and ate with the tax collectors, the prostitutes, the lame, the sick, the poor and the beggars. Those deemed “unclean” and “unworthy”. Those who were unable to give anything in return. Those who were not able to repay him. Those who were not encouraging and uplifting. The addicted. The alcoholics. The abandoned. The unwanted. The outcasts. The ones who had no great morals. The ones who betrayed him. The ones who hurt him. Those were the ones he chose to LOVE, to BLESS, to EAT WITH, to SERVE, to HEAL, to ENCOURAGE and to DO LIFE WITH.
Jesus hung out and ate with the tax collectors, the prostitutes, the lame, the sick, the poor and the beggars. Those deemed “unclean” and “unworthy”.
Loving the Unlovable
I wonder if there is a lesson in there for us today. The Bible says that Christ did not come for the righteous, but for the sinners. It says that he came to seek and to save the lost. Anyone can love those who return the favour. Anyone can love someone who loves them back. But only a true follower of Christ, someone who has the power of the Holy Spirit living inside of them, can love the “unloveable”. And this is what those who need Jesus notice in you – when you love those who can’t repay you, your light shines so bright that others will see. It’s the sort of love that gets people to ask questions about your faith and gives you an opportunity to share the hope in which you believe.
“The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”Luke 19:10
I wonder what happens when we do end up with a circle of people who simply believe the same things that we do. Those who don’t have any differences of opinion, those who will always be able to return your favour. I don’t think we would have the opportunity to show the full extent of the love of Christ. The Bible says that love is patient. How are we to show that side of God’s love to someone if they haven’t tested our patience? It says that love doesn’t keep any record of wrongs. How can we not keep any record of wrongs if someone hasn’t wronged us?
So what does this look like practically? Well, what about that girl at your school who sits by herself at lunch. Why don’t you buy her something from the school canteen and just sit with her for lunch? Listen to her and enjoy her company, encourage her and build her up. What about that girl who hangs out with the wrong crowd, the one struggling to find her place, giving in to peer pressure to be liked and accepted. Why don’t you invite her to hang with you after school? Buy her a hot choc, go shopping, watch a movie, do your homework together? The one who is sick? Why don’t you head over to her house after school with some hot soup, your favourite movie and an encouraging letter? We are surrounded every day by people who are lost, hurting and broken. People who need you to be Jesus to them! Don’t cut them out of your life, LOVE THEM. Perhaps they are the ones who most need your love.