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The Struggle to Love

The Struggle to Love

You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass judgment on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things. (Romans 2:1)

I love someone who is gay. She knows me well, knows I don’t condone the gay lifestyle because of my beliefs.

So, what do I do with this situation? Do I separate myself from her so as not to endorse her behavior? Or do I risk loving her when I don’t know how?

Her sins are just like mine; they’re just a different brand. She and her partner have been together for years now, living in isolation from the rest of us. Underneath the layers of mess and story, her emotions are hinged like a swinging door as she looks for unwavering acceptance. Somewhere deep inside her, like the glow of a smoldering ember, remains the thought that she was made for something more than struggle. And I can deeply relate.

You see, the undeniable connection between us is that we both have struggles; it’s just that mine are more socially acceptable. But sin and sickness is universal.

Sin is not just in my actions; it’s a condition. It’s any and all ways I try to be my own Savior. It’s this wretched heart of mine. Sometimes, it’s a matter of grabbing for power over people at my job, sometimes it’s the lust to buy more “stuff” that will make me feel significant in front of my friends and sometimes it’s just the way I try to control my life to protect my own interests at all costs.

So, here’s the connection between her and me: the bridge to reach her is repentance. If I think my sins are pretty, abstract and occasional, I will have no framework to give Jesus to someone who needs Him. Indeed, we were made for more than struggle. In fact, we were made for glory. But even now, God gives purpose to our struggle, and He is in charge of all that happens to us. I don’t have the power to give my friend much resolution in her life, but I can give her Jesus.

Love is not safe. Love is not efficient. I’m sure I will disappoint her as we go, and I will fail over and again in loving her well. But when you are in Jesus, your sin does not define you. Jesus’ love for his sons and daughters is enough to win our hearts back from all the struggles we’re bound to. And only His love can satisfy us. This is how I can love her still, without conditions. And this is the great hope I have for her heart and mine.

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Jesus, thank You that Your love is enough for me. I’m sorry that I mess up all the time in trying to love the people around me. May the grace you’ve given me motivate me to love others without condition.

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