(A 5 Minute Read)
When we’ve learned how to receive God’s love, grace and mercy for ourselves, when we’ve begun to walk in freedom from performance and drivenness etc. and when we’ve submitted to and aligned ourselves with our Father, we need to begin to practice this same kind of patience and compassion for others.
The Word calls it longsuffering. It’s a state of being firmly grounded and confident in Father God so that when another person fails us in the grace of God, we can use the principles of separation and not allow a root of bitterness to spring up and defile us or others.
Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord: Looking diligently lest any man fail of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled. Hebrews 12:14-15 KJV
Now, not only are we giving ourselves allowance for failure, but we are giving others that same allowance. The word says that God has longsuffering towards us, therefore we need to allow Him to help us to develop that same character quality or fruit of His Spirit in our lives.
But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth. Psalm 86:15 KJV
Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye. Colossians 3:12-13 KJV
Our walkout, as overcomers and children of God, cannot be about performance, it cannot be out of legalism or self-righteousness. The word says that no man is saved by works but by faith and receiving the free gift of repentance and forgiveness of sin that Jesus offered us from the cross.
For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. Ephesians 2:8-9 KJV
If that gift is free and not dependent on our superhuman ability to do everything right, we need to represent that kind of freedom to others as well. Instead of judging others who are struggling with the same old rut, we need to develop a compassion for them just as God has. We can recognize and understand their battleground and pray that God will help them as He has helped us. And then we can love and support them in their journey without accusation or condemnation knowing that our Heavenly Father has gently lifted us out of our own ruts and He can do the same for them also.
And thinkest thou this, O man, that judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou shalt escape the judgment of God? Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? Romans 2:3-4 KJV
We can expect, in our fallen world, to come across negative interactions with other human beings. The enemy loves to bring in division, offenses, conflict, accusation and strife in order to keep us separated from each other and from God in love and relationship. The enemy wants us to forget that the Holy Spirit is also able to work on other’s hearts too. It will be of great help to us if we settle in advance the standard of conduct that God has established in His word in order to be able to maintain a right spirit before God and man:
Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men. Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord. Therefore if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire on his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good. Romans 12:17-21 KJV
Once again this comes down to separation, can we recognize where the enemy has a foothold in a person’s life and develop a compassion for them in their human struggle and a passion for them in prayer to intercede on their behalf? Can we trust God that He will be working on their hearts too by His Holy Spirit? Can you imagine the difference in your life if every time the enemy tried to bring a conflict into your heart about another person, you turned it straight over to God and began to talk to Him about it? This is where He can establish our hearts in righteousness and bring healing to any wounds. This is where He can build in us His heart of forgiveness and compassion for others. This is also where we will be able to witness God fighting on our behalf.
…Thus saith the LORD unto you, Be not afraid nor dismayed by reason of this great multitude; for the battle [is] not yours, but God’s. 2 Chronicles 20:15 KJV
It’s so freeing to know that we don’t have to fix ourselves or others. God’s got that covered; we make a lousy Holy Spirit. All we need to do is to line our hearts up with His and allow Him to work with us and to develop His perspective towards us and others in our hearts. If we lack anything, be it patience, love, longsuffering, etc. all we need to do is to ask God and to seek His Word and His heart in prayer about the matter and He will liberally fill us and grow in us what we need.
If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. James 1:5 KJV
Isn’t it wonderful that God doesn’t expect us to do this on our own? He is right there to help us, to give us wisdom and everything we need to be overcomers, to love ourselves and to love others and to live in peace.
The Be in Health® Team