Loving Others in General (Love Series – Part 3)

Loving Others in General (Love Series – Part 3)

We’ve talked about ways to love your spouse better and ways to love your friends. Now it’s time for loving others in general, like the general public and your coworkers.

Be Slow to Anger – We have become too accustomed in this fast-paced world now to expect to be able to get what we want when we want it. Lord help us if we have to wait 5 extra seconds for something or someone, lest we get hot-headed. Really! That’s how impatient society is now. People are quick to anger when dealing with traffic, waiting in the checkout line, or sitting in a drive-thru. Don’t get angry at people when you don’t get what you want when you want it. Show love by being slow to anger.

Be Mature – “That jerk cut me off! I’ll show him!” or “Throw me under the bus at work… you just wait! I’ll make you look bad!” Sound familiar? The need to retaliate is a fleshly desire. And don’t think for one hot second that I don’t know how much of a struggle this is. Trust me, sister. I know! It’s difficult to choose love over justice. It takes strength to choose love over retaliation. We need to do it though and be mature.

Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone. If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord. Romans 12:17-20

Offer Help – Let’s not let basic courtesies fade away. Open the door for someone. Hold the elevator for the next person. Let someone in front of you. Let the other person have the parking spot instead of rushing into it first. Help a coworker finish a project.

Jesus came to serve, not to be served. Show love by helping others.

Smile – I’ve talked about this before, but I feel strongly enough about it to mention it again. Smiling can go a long way in someone’s day. Smile at others. We often don’t realize how we look when walking through a store or standing in line. Pay attention next time, and you’ll most likely see a lot of scowling faces or just “bleh” expressions. Pay attention to your expression. Smile more in general and you’ll come across as a nicer person. It may even be infectious! So, love others by smiling!

I’ve got a surprise for you mommas next week! Stay tuned! And if you’re not already, SUBSCRIBE TO MY TRIBE below so you don’t miss the next post!

Be loving!

Be brave!

Be blessed!

xoxo

Ash

Loving Your Friends (Love Series – Part 2)

Loving Your Friends (Love Series – Part 2)

Some people expect friendships to just be easy. There’s a problem with that. Friendships are a type of relationship too, and relationships have their ups and downs. The closer you are with a friend, the more the relationship will be similar to that of a marriage. There’s give and take. You’ve got to put in some effort to keep the relationship going. So, don’t expect all your friendships to just be easy peasy.

Here are some reminders on how you can be a more loving friend.

Don’t overanalyze – In today’s text crazy social media world, we tend to spend more electronic time with people than actual physical face time. When messaging someone we miss out on a few social cues like tone of voice and body language. Sure, we have a plethora of emojis to choose from to try to convey the mood or tone of the message, but even those don’t always come out right or get interpreted the way you intend. Remember this before being accusatory or getting upset with the way a friend responded.

Also, don’t overanalyze when a friend doesn’t respond right away, even if it shows that the message has been seen. There are times when I “see” the message, but I’m currently in the middle of something else and don’t have time to respond at that moment. Sometimes I’m trying to finish something else, and I accidentally open a message I wasn’t ready to read yet. If someone doesn’t answer you right away, it doesn’t always mean she’s trying to avoid you. She just might need a hot minute to finish something else before responding.  So, don’t overanalyze.

Give grace –Have you ever had moments where you’ve thought, if she was really a good friend, she wouldn’t do that to me? I have. You know what I say to that? – Are you perfect? Nope. Didn’t think so.

I don’t care if she’s been your best friend for 5 months or 5 years, don’t be so quick to throw a friendship out when you get hurt. People make mistakes. You’re going to have disagreements and misunderstandings, especially the longer you are friends. Give grace.

Listen – Sometimes we all just need someone to listen. It feels good just to get out some feelings without expecting the person to offer a solution. Try to listen more and interrupt less. Also, pay attention while listening. Put the phone down and be present with your friend.

Make time – I think one of the best ways to love a friend is to give them your time. Look sister, I know you may be busy. We can all use that excuse. Yes, I said excuse because that’s what it is. We all have things to do, and outside of working and sleeping we choose what to do with the rest of our time. I know moms with several kids that still make time for friends. It may be difficult, but if you truly want some friend time, you’ll make it happen.

Let’s try to stop using the phrase “we need to get together soon” and start saying things like“hey girl, what are you doing next Tuesday…” When you continue to tell someone you want to get to together but neglect to put actual plans in place, the words lose their meaning. Love you friends and follow through by making time for them.

If you want better friends, try being a better friend!

Be brave!

Be blessed!

xoxo

Ash

Up next, Loving Strangers. Be sure to Subscribe to my Tribe below so you don’t miss any posts!

How Do We Love Bad Company?

I have been struggling with the two verses above. I’ve seen debates in comments on articles about loving your neighbor. Many have questioned who we are to consider our neighbor. Does it mean our physical, living next to us, neighbor? Does it mean our enemy? Does it mean fellow Christians? Does it mean those around us in general? For sake of argument, I’m going to say it means everybody. Because are we not to love our family, our friends, strangers, and even our enemies? Yet, I struggle.

When it comes to this verse, I struggle:

“Do not be misled: Bad company corrupts good character.” (1 Corinthians 15:33)

So, then, if we should avoid “bad company” how are we also to love them? At what point is it okay to walk away? How do we love, but protect ourselves from bad company? This, friends, is where I need help.

So I searched for more guidance on “bad company.” I find earlier in the book of Corinthians, Paul gives more detail on the company we should not keep.

“But now I am writing you that you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral or greedy, an idolater or a slanderer, a drunkard or a swindler. With such a man do not even eat.” (1 Corinthians 5:11)

In this verse, Paul refers to a “brother”, meaning believer, or Christ follower. It doesn’t say to stay away from sinners. Jesus himself spent time with sinners. There’s a difference between sinners, who are unbelievers, and believers, who choose to continue in the same sins. So then, is it okay to walk away from those who choose to continue down the wrong path and not accept help to turn around and go the other direction? I believe so.

I apologize if I’m not making sense to some of you here. This post may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but this topic has been weighing on my mind, particularly because my choice to not keep certain company has, in turn, caused my Christianity to be questioned.

So, how do we love bad company?

Well, my answer for that is with the grace of God and the discernment of knowing when to walk away… which leaves me somewhat feeling as if that doesn’t seem like a real answer, but isn’t it? We are taught in the Bible to discern what is right, what is pure versus what is unholy. So wisdom I shall pray for in order to help me in that area. I’ll trust that God will help guide me on when to love and when to walk away. I pray that you will trust Him too.

Do your best to love, but keep in mind there are times when it is okay to walk away.

I hope that I have caused you to at least pause and think about this topic a little more.

Be brave. Be blessed.

xoxo

Ash

 

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