If you are a relational human being I am sure you have experienced the following scenario from one degree to another maybe in a romantic relationship or a platonic friendship:
It all started so well, a great friendship that I was quite confident would last a lifetime. But because of a series of unfortunate events the friendship quickly disintegrates to one of: frustration, exasperation, heated arguments and finally the decision is made by one or both to just walk away from it all. It doesn’t matter who is in the wrong or right, at the end of the day there is no winner when a friendship fails! Yes, you guessed right my friend, I am speaking from experience.
14 If we love our brothers and sisters, it proves that we have passed from death to life. But a person who has no love is still dead. 15 Anyone who hates another brother or sister is really a murderer at heart. And you know that murderers don’t have eternal life within them.Dear children, let’s not merely say that we love each other; let us show the truth by our actions. 19 Our actions will show that we belong to the truth, so we will be confident when we stand before God. 20 Even if we feel guilty, God is greater than our feelings, and he knows everything. (1 John 3)
Tough words don’t you think? Maybe you think you are off the hook because you have never “hated” anyone, let me ask you; when was the last the time you blatantly ignored a friend because they had hurt you? Is there a particular person in your life whom, when the person’s name or face comes to mind your heart is filled with bitterness, anger, rage? Have you ever told someone: “of course I love everyone BUT so and so is just too difficult to deal with I rather not bother.” Are you one of those who holds grudges for years? There are many ways to hate someone my friend.
Granted some relationships are just not meant to last forever, you could be doing everything to save it but as time goes by you realize you are fighting a loosing battle. Question is, are you willing to quietly walk away? Are you willing to forgive, let go and no matter how tempting, never bring up the reasons why you were treated badly? Can you “turn the other cheek” when the other person is spreading malicious gossip about you? Do you genuinely wish them well? I must confess this does not come easy to me, but as a Christian it is what is asked of me. I hope in time practicing all that 1 John is about will become as easy as breathing meanwhile I keep striving to get there. It’s quite simple really;20 If someone says, “I love God,” but hates a brother or sister,that person is a liar; for if we don’t love people we can see, how can we love God, whom we cannot see? 21 And he has given us this command: Those who love God must also love their brothers and sisters. (1 John 4)