"if your enemy is hungry, give him bread to eat;
and if he is thirsty, give him water to drink;
for so you will heap coals of fire on his head,
and the Lord will reward you."
i read this the other day, at such a perfect time, and was reminded that i never have an excuse to 'give up' on loving someone. it doesn't matter how much they've hurt me, or how difficult they are to love, my duty in Christ is to love them persistently, sacrificially, unconditionally. if i'm not doing that, i'm not imitating Christ.
of course, it's not the easiest thing to do, actually it's probably the most challenging thing to do, and yet it's probably the most rewarding. and not just rewarding for us, but also for our enemies...
"the picture is that of the high priest [leviticus 16:12] who, on the day of atonement, took his censer and filled it with coals of fire and then put incense on the coals to create a pleasing, sweet-smelling fragrance.
the cloud of smoke of the incense covered the mercy seat and was acceptable to God for atonement.
samuel wesley wrote:
'so artists melt the sullen ore of lead, by heaping coals of fire upon its head,
in the kind warmth the metal learns to glow, and pure from dross the silver runs below.'"
[taken from biblegateway]
heaping coals of fire - living out unconditional love - however difficult it may be, has the power to melt our enemies' hearts.... what an amazing reward to reap!! knowing there's that kind of potential just cheers me on! i hope it cheers you on too... let's not give up friends!
love you all!!