Are We to Tolerate People?

"When I began my new job, there was a co-worker who was particularly difficult to work with," John shared in Bible study. "But I thought as a Christian I should tolerate him. I felt I was doing quite a good job of tolerating him."

"Then I realized God hadn't called me to tolerate people. He called me to love them, so I began praying for this man. Soon I realized that I really did love him. Now he is one of my closest co-workers."

God wants our love to "increase" till it "overflows" just as His does for us. "May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else" (1 Thessalonians 3:12). The Greek word for "overflow" means to superabound, to have enough and to spare, to have an excess.

We're most like Christ and most used of Him when we're loving others. As we are sensitive to ways to express God's love, all we do will be used of Him.

Fortunately, we are not left to draw upon our own supply of love which is little better than a cistern-exhaustible and leaky at best. For God "has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit" (Romans 5:5).

Thank you, Jesus, for the supply of overflowing love that You give when I open my heart to You.

"Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart" (1 Peter 1:22).