““You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust. For if you love those who love you, what reward have you? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? And if you greet your brethren only, what do you do more than others? Do not even the tax collectors do so? Therefore you shall be perfect, just as your Father in heaven is perfect.” Mt. 45:43-48
When I asked a man one day why he had been going out of his way every day to help a homeless woman, he didn’t just say it was because he was formerly homeless and understood the plight of homelessness and now wanted to give to someone in the position in which he had once been. He also said he wanted to help her because she was a “good person.” Do you know what struck me about this? I was so thankful to the man who helped the homeless woman, but the Spirit of God led me to share this with you for this reason.
The Lord doesn’t call us to pick and choose whom we love and serve and help based on those we feel are “good people.” We are simply called to love and serve and help unconditionally. We are to love others as ourselves not contingent on them, and whether or not we may feel they’re “good” or “bad”, but contingent on Christ. The Lord’s greatest commands are to love Him with all our hearts and to love others as ourselves (Mt. 22:37-40), and it’s in Christ’s love through Christ’s strength for Christ’s sake we are to love others regardless of their condition or circumstances.
When God’s Spirit leads us to reach out in love to a particular person, or group of people, we need to simply humble ourselves and obey the Lord. He may lead us to serve one of the sweetest, kindest, gentlest, most broken tender people we’ve ever met, or He may lead us to love and pray for and encourage and give provision to one of the ugliest, dirtiest, nastiest, smelliest, most selfish, scariest people we’ve ever known.
Without Christ in our hearts and lives, we will automatically gravitate to the people we think are “good” when it comes to loving and giving, if we’re prone to loving and giving at all without the Lord, won’t we? But with Christ at the center of our lives, we who faithfully and devotedly believe in and follow Him must never withhold the love and provision He gives us to extend humbly to those to whom He leads us to serve in His name.
Please be careful not to pick and choose whom to love and help based on the desires and comfort of your flesh. We need to deny ourselves and reverently follow the leading of the Spirit of God as He shows us all those to whom He calls us to bless in His most precious name. All for HIS glory, AMEN!