Love Protects

Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres (1 Corinthians 13:6–7)

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Love protects. Real, biblical love always protects others. When we abandon protecting love, our relationships unravel. The Apostle John reminds us of that with a graphic illustration: “For this is the message that you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another. We should not be like Cain, who was of the evil one and murdered his brother. And why did he murder him? Because his own deeds were evil and his brother’s righteous” (1 John 3:11–12, ESV). Remember Cain? He was the first child born on Earth, the firstborn son of Adam and Eve. But he’s notorious for murdering his brother, Abel. In fact, the word translated murdered (or slew) literally means cut his throat. Cain brutally killed his younger brother.

Why would he do that? Why would a person kill a member of his own family?

Sadly, people do it both literally and figuratively all the time. While only the literal, flesh-and-blood murders make the headlines, people all around us are dying in their families.

Like families who are fighting over their parents’ estate. Like children who tear their families apart through rebellion. Like any number of conflicts within our homes. Like how our anger against those closest to us can grow into murderous rage (see Matthew 5:21–22).

Why? Why do people hurt each other? Why did Cain hurt innocent Abel? John tells us clearly. “And why did he murder him? Because his own deeds were evil and his brother’s righteous” (1 John 3:12). Never underestimate the conflict that rages in the heart of a person who is in the process of rejecting God. Never underestimate the tension that person feels between your life and his. “Do not be surprised, brothers, that the world hates you” (1 John 3:13). In this context, the word world refers to the people you know: your neighbors, coworkers, friends, and family members who have not received Christ and are not walking in Him—and who feel the dissonance between your life and theirs.

Satan, the one who shattered the first family in history through his influence over Cain, has the very same goal today: to shatter your family. He’s actively working on it. The enemy wants to devour your marriage. And your children. He wants to have them, and he wants the world to have them.

Our instinct is to fight—to draw the line, stand our ground, raise our fists, and fight. The biblical way, the way to cooperate with what God is doing in this world and in your relationships, is the way of love. That is our protection.

The way of Cain is opposite to the way of love. People who choose Cain’s path of hatred still wander in a wilderness, just as Cain wandered in the wilderness the rest of his life (Genesis 4:12), and miss out on the good things God desires to give them.

If you want God’s protection on your family, choose love instead of hate. Turn the other cheek (Matthew 5:39). Go the second mile (Matthew 5:41). Avoid the life of Cain. Choose instead the way of love, and experience God’s protection over your relationships.

JOURNAL

When have you seen someone dying in a family—the toxic, murderous hate in a relationship killing someone emotionally, if not physically?How can love protect your family and your closest relationships?

PRAY

Father God, open my eyes to see the ways I’m like Cain. What conflicts am I allowing to brew in my family? What anger is bubbling into murderous rage in my relationships? Thank You for the clarity to see how hatred kills relationships. I choose instead the way of love. Love protects. Help me to protect those I love by loving them. Your way is always best, Father. I pray in Jesus’ name, amen.

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About Jesus is a safe harbor

I am a follower of Jesus. I am a grateful delivered woman who was once an addict, but now God has restored me and renewed me. I have been redeemed and remade by our Creator through salvation of His Son, Jesus Christ! I just want to share what God has done in my life that you may have the opportunity to experience the same joy He gave me. I give God all the glory for everything in my life for I couldn't accomplish anything apart from Him. If ye shall know the truth, the truth shall set you free, John 8:32. He puts people in my life that help me and gives me the opportunity to help another. I am never surprised by his love and blessings. God has placed a confidence and love in myself that I have never had before… so "Thank you God".. for the many True Blue Christians you have put in my life and for all the blessings you bestow on me daily. I have not come this far without lots of prayers and the help and love of my true friends and family and I thank you God for those special people in my life. You are 100% my Savior! I will forever have your name on my lips. I realize now with lots of prayer and reading of the Word… that all the answers were here for me and I never asked the questions. Although I still struggle daily with other life’s daily cards that are dealt, I have an attitude now of “NO MATTER WHAT “– I will praise You, Lord~~~through my storms and my triumphs! I have much more to share and would love to answer any questions anyone may have for through all my trials what has come to be is that I want to help others to see what I didn’t see and hopefully prevent the same hurts, guilt, shame and woes that I had to deal with and give them the best gift of all… JESUS! I believe it's important that we know who we are in God ... We are a one of a kind and God has made us like no other for a purpose- His purpose. Yes, bad things happen and yes, we make poor choices, but we don't have to continue to make them. God's mercies are new each day. Once we realize, know and most importantly believe who we are in Christ, that we are a child of God, we are not an accident, and whatever the circumstances before us each day no matter what they are... God gives us the choice and the power of Him to choose right and live right. We no longer have to live in the past, but in the present and look with expectation to the future with God by our side guiding us and directing our steps. He is our strength and our hope needs to reside in Him. Let his power and love work in your life today and see that life does not have to be the way you are living now. He wants to help you, but you have to let him. He can't make us come to him, he is not lost - WE ARE! Please share this blog with others to encourage them for the glory of God!
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