Letting Go of Hatred

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear. . . If anyone says, “I love God,” yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen. And he has given us this com­mand: Whoever loves God must also love his brother. – 1 John 4:18-21

Letting Go of Hatred

It’s easy to say you love God. But it’s not always so easy to love other people, is it? And what is it that God wants from us? He wants us to love Him and love others. And, God has so intertwined your love for Him with love for others that when you really start loving others with His love, you’ll give up your hatred and prejudice.

If you truly love God and you truly love others, you’ll find that you don’t have the option of hating our brothers and sisters. In fact, He doesn’t even give you the option of hating your enemies. Jesus said, “But if you are willing to listen, I say, love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you. Pray for the happiness of those who curse you. Pray for those who hurt you” (Luke 6:27-28).

The bottom line is this: surrendering to God means surrendering your hatred as well. Loving people you like is easy. But God calls us to exhibit His love—which was a love that drove Jesus to the cross. That means loving people you don’t necessarily like. That means loving your enemy. You can’t do it on your own. You need to draw from God’s endless supply of His love. Draw from his well, and drink.

– Steve Arterburn

There is only one way of not hating those who do us wrong, and that is by doing them good. – Henri Amiel

I will permit no man to narrow and degrade my soul by making me hate him. – Booker T. Washington

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The Differences Between Men and Women

The sun has one kind of splendor, the moon another and the stars another; and star differs from star in splendor. – 1 Corinthians 15:41

The Differences Between Men and Women

Consider these gender differences I found on a humorous website:

  • If Laura, Suzanne, and Debra go out for lunch, they’ll call each other Laura, Suzanne, and Debra. But if Mike, Charlie, and Bob go out they’ll refer to each other as Godzilla, Champ, and Grubby.
  • A man will pay $2 for a $1 item he wants. A woman will pay $1 for a $2 item she doesn’t want.
  • A woman has the last word in any argument. Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.
  • A man has six items in his bathroom: a toothbrush, toothpaste, shaving cream, razor, soap, and a towel. The average woman has 377 items. A man wouldn’t be able to identify most of them.

Recognizing differences is especially important when it comes to how we love. Understanding that everyone doesn’t share my experiences, nor do they think like me, are important steps in not being threatened; and they are important so you don’t feel anger at differences you note in how someone you love behaves or reacts.

Steve Arterburn

Nobody will ever win the battle of the sexes. There’s too much fraternizing with the enemy. – Henry Kissinger

Relationship Addiction

We who have fled to take hold of the hope offered to us may be greatly encouraged. We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. – Hebrews 6:18b–19

Relationship Addiction

Have you ever thought about being addicted to love? It sounds like a good thing to be addicted to, but clinically speaking, it’s a problem.

Relationship addicts live in a world of paradoxes that leaves them feeling they have no way out. They desperately want to get close to someone, but end up with a person whose problems make closeness impossible. They seek security, but end up with someone who always leaves the back door open for a quick get-away.

Relationship addicts crave unconditional love, but live in constant fear of abandonment if they don’t live up to their own impossible standards. They want to be free to love, but often trap themselves in a relationship by becoming pregnant or by weaving some other type of emotional spider web. Drowning in the whirlpool of their own emotions, they turn to a rescuer who cannot swim.

When all is said and done, for healing to occur, if you’re a relationship addict, you’ll need to come to the end of your own strength and seek God’s help to resolve the hurts of the past and move toward a genuine focus on others. Without this, relationship addicts are doomed to a cycle of misery and futility. Remember, you can never fix what only God can fix.

Steve Arterburn

God is more interested in your future and your relationships than you are. – Billy Graham

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Peace with Pop

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. – Romans 8:28

Peace with Pop

The story of Jacob in the Bible is one of a family in relational turmoil. His family wasn’t the first dysfunctional family mentioned in the Bible, but they were certainly among the most prominent. You’ve heard the saying, ‘like father, like son.’ Well, Jacob’s failure to be discreet, honest, patient, and his failure to give unconditional love had a terrible impact on his children. He played favorites and set no clear boundaries on their behavior. To say that his relationship with many of his sons was strained is an understatement.

Whether you come from a family of dysfunction, like Jacob’s, or your family is more like the Cleavers of Leave It To Beaver, God calls us to honor our parents. You could make the argument that he commands it!

You may have the joy of honoring parents that have been all you could hope for, but some of you only have memories of parents who’ve hurt you, and that can be a scary thing. The passing years, lack of communication, and memories of angry, heated, emotional exchanges can create tremendous anxiety.

But, God is in the redemption business. He takes the bad things that happen to us and turns them to our good. It may be a process, to first connect, to confront, to forgive, to realize your roles have changed . . . but God is still in the redemption business. Don’t forget that.

– Steve Arterburn

To understand is not only to pardon, but in the end to love. – Walter Lippmann

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Love Me

Who are you? he asked. I am your servant Ruth, she said. Spread the corner of your garment over me, since you are a kinsman-redeemer. – Ruth 3:9

Love Me

Please love me!” Isn’t this what we all think and feel on the inside? We may not want to admit it for fear of rejection, but we all are hungry for love. Some of us are starving for affection because of previous losses. We gather whatever crumbs we can find to fill that hunger deep inside.

Part of the process of turning your life over to God involves developing healthy relationships with people and with God. It’s scary to say, “Please love me.” But it’s worth the risk. If you don’t satisfy your hunger for love in a legitimate way, you’ll be driven toward depression, anxiety, addictions, or compulsive behaviors. God designed us to love and be loved.

Take a look at the story of Ruth in the Bible. It’s a great story about a woman who wasn’t afraid to say, “Please love me.”

Steve Arterburn

Love sought is good, but given unsought is better. – Shakespeare

In Times of Grief

Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the saints. – Philemon 1:7

In Times of Grief

When someone you know is grieving, you want to express your love and concern. But, how do you know what to say? Sometimes there just aren’t words. But it’s important that you spend time with your friend or family member. What’s as important as anything is just showing up.

What do you say to someone who is suffering? Some people are gifted with words of wisdom. For such, one is profoundly grateful. But not all are gifted in that way. Some blurt out things that don’t really make sense. That’s o.k. too. Your words don’t have to be wise. The heart that speaks is heard more than the words spoken. And if you can’t think of anything to say, just say, “I can’t think of anything to say. But I want you to know that we are with you in your grief.”

Or even just embrace. Not even the best of words can take away the pain. What words can do is testify that there is more than pain in our journey on earth to a new day. Of those things that are more, the greatest is love. Express your love. How appallingly grim must be the death of a child in the absence of love.

Sharing in someone’s grief is no time to worry about your own discomfort and uncertainty about what to show. Believe that God will give you the words, the touch, the hug that will comfort. And you’ll be glad you shared in the moment and gave strength to a hurting soul.

– Steve Arterburn

Tears shed for self are tears of weakness, but tears shed for others are a sign of strength. – Billy Graham

Banishing Fear

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear. . . – 1 John 4:18a

Banishing Fear

When we feel threatened in relationships, we tend to become defensive and guarded. On the other hand, when we feel safe, we’re far more willing to be open and vulnerable. This is true of our relationships with other people, and it’s also true in our relationship with God.

The apostle John wrote: “Such love has no fear because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of judgment, and this shows that [God’s] love has not been perfected in us. We love each other as a result of his loving us first.”

If Jesus hadn’t paid the price for our sins on the cross, there would be every reason for fear and defensiveness before a holy God. But, God showed His love for us by sending His Son, Jesus, to pay for our sins and free us from them. As a result, it’s safe to open yourself to God.

Jesus has his arms wide open, calling you to come and receive His love. Could there be anything better? His love is real, and waiting to embrace you. His love is ready to transform you and drive the fear from your heart. God is love, and He shows Himself to you in and through His Son, Jesus Christ.

When you open yourself to God’s love, you’ll become open to seeing the truth about God and yourself—and you’ll no longer need to be afraid.

– Steve Arterburn

Never take counsel of your fears. – Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson

New Life Live: June 22, 2016

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Topics: Affairs, Pornography, Trust, Separation, Grief, Intimacy
Hosts: Steve Arterburn, Dr. Dave Stoop, Dr. Jill Hubbard

Caller Questions:

  1. After my affair, my wife is now in love with a woman; should I wait it out?
  2. My husband is doing porn; why does he hide texts and lie to me?
  3. I suspect my separated husband is manic depressive but he will not do anything about it.
  4. How do I move on from a traumatic job loss that I can’t stop thinking about?
  5. I said disrespectful things jokingly to my wife and she will not be intimate with me; how do I fix it?

Suggested Resources:
7 Minute Marriage Solution
Worthy of Her Trust
Healing Is a Choice
How We Love

Subscribe to the NEW LIFE LIVE Podcast via iTunes or streaming audio from Stitcher, the Smart Radio App.

The Character Building Path: Following His Footsteps

“Come, follow Me,” Jesus said, “and I will make you fishers of men.” And at once they left their nets and followed Him. – Matthew 4:19-20

Following His Footsteps

Jesus walks with you. Are you walking with Him? Hopefully, you will choose to walk with Him today and every day of your life.

Jesus loved you so much that He endured unspeakable humiliation and suffering for you. How will you respond to Christ’s sacrifice? Will you take up His cross and follow Him (Luke 9:23), or will you choose another path? When you place your hopes squarely at the foot of the cross, when you place Jesus squarely at the center of your life, you will be blessed.

The old familiar hymn begins, “What a friend we have in Jesus….” No truer words were ever penned. Jesus is the sovereign Friend and ultimate Savior of mankind. Christ showed enduring love for His believers by willingly sacrificing His own life so that we might have eternal life. Now, it is our turn to become His friend.

Let us love our Savior, let us praise Him, and let us share His message of salvation with the world. When we do, we demonstrate that our acquaintance with the Master is not a passing fancy, but is, instead, the cornerstone and the touchstone of our lives.

Following Christ is a matter of obedience. If you want to be a little more like Jesus . . . learn about His teachings, follow in His footsteps, and obey His commandments.

– Steve Arterburn

Imagine the spiritual strength the disciples drew from walking hundreds of miles with Jesus . . . 3 John 4. – John Maxwell 

Our responsibility is to feed from Him, to stay close to Him, to follow Him—because sheep easily go astray—so that we eternally experience the protection and companionship of our Great Shepherd the Lord Jesus Christ. – Franklin Graham 

It’s your heart that Jesus longs for: your will to be made His own with self on the cross forever, and Jesus alone on the throne. – Ruth Bell Graham

Walking Our Talk

So don’t get tired of doing what is good. Don’t get discouraged and give up, for we will reap a harvest of blessing at the appropriate time. – Galatians 6:9

Walking Our Talk
If you’re like most people, you seek the admiration of your neighbors, your coworkers, and your family members. But the eagerness to please others should never overshadow your eagerness to please God. And your desire to impress others should never cause you to compromise your beliefs or to defy your conscience. In short, you must be a “doer of the word” by putting God first. In other words, are you walking your talk of love, grace, peace, mercy and joy?

The words of Matthew 6:33 offer clear instructions for managing your day and your life: But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you” (HCSB).

Each new day presents countless opportunities to put God in first place . . . or not. When you honor Him by living according to His commandments, you earn the abundance and peace that He promises. But, if you ignore God’s teachings, you’ll pay a price, perhaps a very great price indeed.

Would you like a time-tested formula for successful living? Here it is: Don’t just listen to God’s Word, live by it. Does this sound too simple? Perhaps it is simple, but it is also the only way to reap the marvelous riches that God has in store for you.

Ask yourself if your behavior has been radically changed by your unfolding relationship with God. If the answer to this question is unclear to you—or if the honest answer is a resounding no—think of a single step you can take, a positive change in your life, that will bring you closer to your Creator.

– Steve Arterburn

Although God causes all things to work together for good for His children, He still holds us accountable for our behavior. – Kay Arthur   

Either God’s Word keeps you from sin, or sin keeps you from God’s Word. – Corrie ten Boom

There may be no trumpet sound or loud applause when we make a right decision, just a calm sense of resolution and peace. – Gloria Gaither

The temptation of the age is to look good without being good. – Brennan Manning

If we have the true love of God in our hearts, we will show it in our lives. We will not have to go up and down the earth proclaiming it. We will show it in everything we say or do. – D. L. Moody