Selfishness isn’t something we have to be taught; it is born inside of us. On the contrary, we have to be guided by our parents and teachers on being unselfish. Even our concept of love is very human. We love people who love us. We are nice to people who are nice to us, but to be nice to someone rude to us is hard. Here are three things that God wants from us: “God wants us to love people the way he does.” “God wants us to see people the way he does.” Lastly, “God wants us to have a heart that ministers to people.”
God wants us to love people the way he does. God loves the whole world. His love does not depend on our goodness. Dennis the menace and his partner in crime received cookies from Mrs. Wilson. His accomplice said, “Wow, we must have been good to get these cookies today.” Dennis replied, “Mrs. Wilson doesn’t give us these cookies because we are but because she is good.” That is precisely the way the love of God works. We have to learn to love people who don’t deserve our love but need to be loved.
God wants us to see people the way he sees them. Not the way they are but the way they can be, not with their hang-ups and fears but with firm faith and trust in God. God sees past their faults and envisions where they can be.
God wants us to have a heart that ministers to people. We live in a broken world filled with broken people. They are everywhere, in our family, among our neighbors, acquaintances, and even strangers. If we observe how Jesus ministered to the broken-hearted, we can learn. The story of our Lord and the woman at the well gives us insight into ministering to the broken-hearted.
I believe that God wants us to break out of our comfort zones and begin to minister to hurting people. Some of us are too comfortable and don’t want to be burdened by someone else’s problems. Others are very closed off and unwilling even to initiate a conversation with someone you don’t know.
I am convinced that God arranges the people he wants us to meet. As we go about our day, the Holy Spirit sets up divine appointments. Such was the case when Jesus ministered to the woman hat the well in John 4.
It is a sobering thought to realize that we meet people who have eternal souls and are so precious to God that he has arranged for us to meet and minister to them. If we desire this kind of heart, God will give it to us, and the Holy Spirit will arrange our calendar with extraordinary people with all sorts of needs.
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