Suddenly, spontaneously, it starts.
Triggered by an irritant, the swell builds.
Muscles contract with choreographed precision, culminating in the eruption of a simple sneeze.
It occurs naturally.
That which is aggravating our nasal passages is gone.
I just wish I could eradicate irritants in my relationships as easily.
It just doesnít come naturally.
Iíd like to say that loving people comes easy to me all the time, but it doesnít.
Sometimes, itís hard. Things that people do aggravate me. A lot.
Jesus knew that we would struggle with difficult people, and it would be hard to love them. He said we would have trouble, and it would not be easy.
People will reject us, offend us, provoke us and rattle us.
They will hurt us, use us, abuse and confuse us.
People will slander and gossip and lie.
They will manipulate and exasperate and rile.
I donít like it when Iím faced with troublesome people. I want to lash out and cast the irritant away from me. I want to be done with the situation, and sometimes, done with the person.
But Jesus has other ideas.
He calls us to love our enemies.
Thatís hard for me on a good day, nearly impossible on a bad.
Thankfully, Jesus did not leave us alone to figure it out. He sent His Holy Spirit to work in us and teach us, to strengthen us and empower us to walk in a way that does not come naturally.
Please Lord, remind me with a sneeze, to love my enemies.
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