So here is my post from a couple of weeks ago on being a living sacrifice. You know how every now and then you just have big revelations that end up being life altering? That was one of them. I keep going back to Romans to read more and this is a bit of what I've been learning...
So as I step out in faith to love if I'm not loved, serve if I'm not served, trust if I'm not trusted, accept if I'm not accepted, allow safety if I'm not safe, understand if I'm misunderstood, and forgive if I'm not forgiven, there will be hurt. There is hurt.
Romans 12: 14
Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse. NASV
"But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you," NASV
"Bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you." NASV
1 Corinthians 4: 12
"...when we are reviled, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure." NKJV
Hmmmm... So based on these scriptures this is what is required of me:
Bless: to speak well of, to invoke a benediction upon, to pray for
Love: 1 Corinthians 13:4-8
"Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant, does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered, does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails;" NASV
Endure: hold up against, bear with, forbear
So I'm not only required to hang in there and get through it, I'm required to love. To actively seek good for, to speak well of, not be provoked (even in the interest of self protection or defense). Wow.
I have to say I have been hurt by sin as this world is full of it, and this is just where God has me right now as He moves me to a new place of loving people without regard to self interest or self protection. But I also sin just as much as anyone else in this world, and a lot more than many.
It's a pretty scary, unsettling, unnerving, challenging, risky place to go. But God did it, and He's got my back.