That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Cor 12:10
“Real isn’t how you are made,’ said the Skin Horse. ‘It’s a thing that happens to you. When a child loves you for a long, long time, not just to play with, but really loves you, then you become Real.’ –The Velveteen Rabbit
Love, real love, has a price tag attached to it, doesn’t it?
For the sake of love we forfeit our autonomy, become preoccupied with the object of our affections, and toss aside any notion we might have had that we can ever again forge a plan without taking the feelings of another into consideration.
Ah, love, it changes us!
When we love, our contact with others has the power to rub our fur off, stain the insides of our ears, and cause our otherwise beautiful features to crinkle, wrinkle, and fade. Don’t believe me on this one? Ask any mom whether or not she thinks love has changed her. She will quickly tell you that the “her” she was before having a baby, and the “her” she was after having a baby were not the same.
Love carried in a womb nine months changes a woman!
The Apostle Paul said that loving the Lord Jesus changed him. It made him more willing to suffer for his Savior. It made him able to actually “delight” in weakness.
Delight in insults.
Delight in hardships.
Delight in persecutions.
Loving the Lord changed Paul so that he was able to delight in difficulties (which I’m guessing includes all the other various things a prophet suffers for his Lord, in addition to Paul’s short list).
The Apostle Paul was a wise man, for he saw the benefit of change—of becoming something different because of love—and he agreed to the struggle in order to reap the rewards. Eventually, he realized that Love had made him something he’d never been before.
Strong, though weak.
Today, as we move through another day in God’s kingdom, will we remember what truly surrendering ourselves to Jesus can mean for our lives? The same change Paul saw take root in his life can take root in ours. All we have to do to see it happen is lean in to the Lord a little more each day.
Are you ready to be REAL and CHANGED? It all begins with Love!
How has love changed you into a different person? Are you happy or sad about the person you’ve become?