Recently, I went out of town on business. Tired, exhausted, hungry and drained from a long day. I stood in line waiting to board the aircraft home, I caught eyes with an elderly gentlemen. And I noticed him look down at the half eaten salad I had in my hand, I just nodded and smiled. He asked me if I had a fork (the salad was from earlier in the day and I forgot I threw my fork away). I told him I didn’t have one. He then began to get up from his seat, which is when I noticed he had a handicap. My heart went out to him, as I could tell the pain he was in as he stood up and walked over to grab his bag from a few feet away. As he slowly walked back over to me, I noticed he had a fork in his hand. He handed the fork to me and said that it would be too hard to eat a salad with my fingers. Very grateful, I smiled and thanked him. It touched me that he would go out of his way, despite his pain, to help me.
As I flew home, I couldn’t help but think how kind that gesture was that gentleman had shown towards me. It made me ask myself a question. Do I go above and beyond for others, like that man did for me? I poked my chest out and thought, Well that’s easy… The answer to that question is..Yes I do, all the time…Then the Holy Spirit asked … Aquilla, even when it hurts? ( I knew the hurt that the Holy Spirit spoke of was not physical, it was emotional). I sunk my chest back in and paused and thought…Well uh, maybe not so much, when it hurts. As I sat quietly, looking out the aircraft window down at the beautiful lights below, my heart became full and God began to minister to me.
“We love because God first loved us. If we say we love God but hate any of our brothers or sisters in his family, we are liars. If we don’t love someone we have seen, how can we love God? We have never even seen him. God gave us this command: If we love God, we must also love each other as brothers and sisters.” 1John 4:19-21
We all have pains. It may not be physical, like the gentlemen at the airport. Yet, we have had at some point in life emotional pain, caused by someone else. Whether it was words that were spoken to or about us or actions that were or were not taken, we’ve all been hurt. Can you think of someone that has emotionally pained you, either present or past? Perhaps when you were a child…your father disappointed you, or you’re married…your spouse hurt you with harsh words, at work…a co-worker belittled you, you have children… they disrespected you or that best friend that you trusted…betrayed you. Now, that very, person that you see in your mind and heart, that has caused you pain, would you be willing to help them? Knowing they needed it, even if they didn’t ask? Perhaps it’s not a fork they need, but an ear to listen, a shoulder to cry on, a ride to a destination, some money in their pocket or even a prayer to be said? If there was hesitation, forgiveness is missing.
“Be kind and loving to each other. Forgive each other the same as God forgave you through Christ.” – Ephesians 4:32
Ladies After Wisdom, I’ve had my fair share of emotional knock downs. I believe many were unintentional, yet some were intentional. I’ve been brought to tears, brought to breakdowns…even brought to therapy…all because of what someone did or didn’t do to or for me. Yet, the flip side is, I know that I’ve hurt someone. I’ve pained someone. I’ve brought someone to tears. I’ve been careless at times and hurt someone. I’ve even pained God, with past choices and decisions I’ve made. Even in present times, when I slip up and fall and make a mistake, which is unpleasing to Him. And even though I’ve pained Him, what does he continue to shower on me…Grace and Mercy. And that is what are to do with others who have caused us pain. Be merciful. Be graceful.
The followers of Jesus were standing there too. They saw what was happening and said to Jesus, “Lord, should we use our swords?” And one of them did use his sword. He cut off the right ear of the servant of the high priest. Jesus said, “Stop!” Then he touched the servant’s ear and healed him. – Luke 22: 49-51
L.A.W., that passage above referenced the time when Jesus was being taken away to be arrested (and eventually killed) and He knew it. The servant who was taking Him away, got his ear cut off by one of Jesus’ followers. Although that servant was someone who was causing Jesus pain, He healed him any way. Why would He heal him? Because Jesus is merciful, graceful, forgiving and loving.
L.A.W., I know what you’re thinking, “Yeah Aquilla, that’s Jesus and this is me… you don’t know what they did to me.” “You don’t know what they said to me.” You don’t know how long it has taken me to get over that.” “Wait, I’m not even over that yet.” “You just don’t know…”. You’re right, I don’t know. But what I do know is that we are to be merciful. Does that mean, you rush and throw yourself into be hurt again? NO, boundaries must be set, yet keep in mind that person who has wounded, broken and scarred you… is an imperfect person; who fell and continues to mess up every day. The One who can repair you is Jesus. But, you know who else is imperfect…You are my dear. Also, keep in mind, If you desire to be helped… you need to help. If you desire to receive mercy and grace…be graceful and merciful. Even when the person you are to help, has hurt you. L.A.W., I pray for you daily. I love you. All is well =o).
Read: 1 Corinthians 13
Affirmation: I am merciful, because I have received mercy. I forgive because I have been forgiven. And I love because I am loved.
Prayer: Father, it’s me again. Thank You for today. Thank You for loving me. Thank You for showering me with grace and mercy. Father, I find it hard to love and forgive others who have hurt me. It’s hard to help them, pray for them and honestly to even think of them at times. I ask that You forgive me. I ask that you heal me of deep seeded wounds. I ask that you bless me to freely forgive as I have been freely forgiven. I know that I am imperfect and I am terrified to think where I could be without your grace and mercy. I need help, to release negative emotions and embrace Your love. Lead me Lord, in your Word and in Your direction to walk in emotional healing. I ask that you bless me to willingly help others, even when I’ve been hurt by them. I praise You.
In Jesus Name, Amen.
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