Thanks for the Rebuke

Thanks for the Rebuke

Yesterday I got this note from a dear friend of mine who has been a great example of unconditional love over the past few years:

Joel, I read your blog today.  I think it’s your best so far.  Do I sense mercy?

Wounds from a friend can be trusted (Proverbs 27:6), even when they come in the form of sarcasm. J  The last line of her note rang in my head the rest of the day.

When life is going well it’s really easy to believe you have things figured out.  It’s easy to dole out advice to anyone who is suffering and give them quick answers to solve their problems.  “Just do this and things will be fine – that’s what I did!”

But as my friend subtly reminded me today, most people don’t need advice – they need a little love and mercy.  Here’s what that looks like:

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.  It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. (1 Cor. 13:4-7)

Sure, there are times when someone needs a good talking to.  But when people are suffering in this life, instruction rarely comforts – love and mercy always do.  Thanks for the reminder dear friend.

Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins. (1 Peter 4:8)