I want to have a loving heart, don’t you? One that beats for others and yet stays strong. One that is so filled to the rim with godly love that nothing can break it. A love that will cushion my heart and strengthen it, making it pliable and soft. Even if I have only an ounce of the love of God in my heart, I can reach many with the message of hope and find joy in all circumstances.

But the second half of the verse caused my eyebrow to cock. Perseverance? Wait. What?

Then I think back to the cross. The words, the agony, and yet above all, the love. “Father forgive them for they don’t know what they are doing” (Luke 23:24).

The way to keep my heart loving is to forgive. I can keep it soft, yet strong as a rock, by seeing people as humans who are as flawed as I am and are in need of a Savior.

Today, more than ever, we need to show more mercy and grace towards each other. We are all human and we goof up. That is why there is a delete button on our keyboards and erasers on pencils.

Yet God loves us, and because of that, we can persevere and choose to love each other as well. We can set aside our emotions and see others as God sees them — broken but repairable. Just as we are. We all have a hole in our hearts that love can fill.

Love grows out of perseverance. God knows he has been patient enough with each of us!

Father, thank you for never giving up on me and loving me anyway. Help me see others as you see them. Push aside my emotions and thoughts to view them as yours, worthy of love. May Christ be my example, strength, and confidence. Amen.

Go Deeper — Who has set your teeth on edge lately? Will you take a deep breath, pray about them, and then ask God to give you a new perspective?

Tags: 1&2 Thessalonians 2 Thessalonians 3
Photo Credit: Michael Schaffler