Speak With Love

“I have much to say about you and much to condemn; but the one who sent me is true, and I declare to the world what I have heard from him.” John 8:26 NRSV

Jesus said, “I am the light of the world.” (John 8:12) What an amazing statement! What an important revelation! If he is the light, then his words shined the light of God’s truth into our world.

How did the Pharisees react to this seemingly audacious statement?  They mumbled and grumbled. They questioned Jesus’ authority. Later they plotted and planned. They did everything they could to discredit Jesus.

MP900049542[1] What must it have been like for Jesus to give and give, only to be rejected at every turn by these seemingly religious men? I wonder if he ever felt tempted to just let off some righteous steam and tell those Pharisees off. I wonder if he felt like ranting and raving about their blindness and unbelief.

Even though Jesus was challenged by the lack of faith and closed-minded thinking he encountered, Jesus simply responded with more truth. He just kept on telling the people what God gave him to say. He stayed true to his mission and honored his calling.

Jesus was sent to love, not to judge. If he were to judge, he would have judged rightly. But he did not judge. He did not give the wayward, the sinful and the self-righteous the tongue lashing they deserved. Instead, Jesus bit his tongue and did exactly what God sent him to do.

Jesus was sent to love, not to judge.

How often have you been in a situation where you let you righteous indignation flare? How often have you spoken angry words, which proved your point and won the battle, but destroyed an opportunity for love and grace?

I think Jesus knew a great secret. I think he knew that acting in love is always the right thing to do. At the same time, he knew that real love never backs down and compromises the truth.

Acting in love is always the right thing to do!

MP900316853[1]With Jesus’ help, we can all learn to speak the truth in love. We can learn to use  truth like he did, to build up people, not to knock them over. We can learn to use truth to ignite hope, not beat it down. We can learn to use truth to strengthen faith, not to condemn doubt.

We can do what Jesus did. We can speak the truth in love! Today, why not respond to those who challenge you with a pinch of truth and a healthy dash of love!

Spread Truth with Love, Today!

Prayer:

Lord of love, you came in love, you spoke in love, and you acted in love. I want to be like you. Help me to speak the truth, and to always speak it in love!

Amen.

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