1Co 13:4-5 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant (5) or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful;
Are there or have there been people in your life who caused you to wonder/fear that the slightest misstep on your part would result in their rejection of you? You may not have even realized it enough to verbalize that fear at the time, but still it caused you (as you look back) to as they say, “walk on eggshells.” You wonder with each word you speak, with each thing you do – when the hammer is going to fall.
At the root of this is the lack of biblical, godly love in the heart of the wicked. Recently I experienced this very thing. A person who doesn’t even know me asked me for a favor that was simply impossible for me to give. When I explained and answered that I was unable to help, I received a snarky reply meant to be a verbal dagger. Wicked people, and it seems especially those who claim to be Christians, are devoid of the love of God. And that means, as the Scripture above states, that they are devoid of qualities such as patience, kindness, and thinking the best rather than the worst. They characteristically attribute the worst of motives to us when they perceive that we have wronged them. And of course sometimes our motives are not good – we sin. But even then, when we confess our sin the Lord forgives us and restores us. There is not such forgiveness or restoration to be found in the wicked however.
I know that many of you are just like me. You have been assaulted, abused, and mistreated by narcissists, sociopaths, abusers and counterfeit “brethren” in Christ many times. What happens? You begin to live just waiting for that hammer blow to strike. Something you say, something you do, something even imagined that you might do, results in loveless people assuming and accusing the worst of motives to you. Such people can be done with you faster than (thinking of a good metaphor here) – faster than the blink of an eye. They know nothing of: “Eph 4:2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love.”
Now, if you were to know me, I can tell you that you are going to at some point spot some sin in me, or hear me say some thoughtless thing that could offend, or…..well, the list goes on. But I could see the same things in you given enough time, right? So, if we are going to genuinely love one another, this means that we are going to have to be forgiving, bear with one another, be patient, and stop assuming the worst in one another. Think of it. Those of you who have been abused by abusers as we define them here, know full well that these kind of wicked people are all the time telling us what we were thinking, we our motive was when we said or did such and such. But that is impossible. Only the Lord knows our hearts (we have enough trouble knowing them ourselves!). It is a Mount Everest of arrogance (and we have been guilty of this at times ourselves) to pronounce ourselves able to judge the thoughts and motives of another person. When the wicked condemn us in this manner, they are not interested in any explanation. In their heart which is a desert void of love, they attack.
Pro 18:24 A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
A friend sticks closer than a brother. Who is such a friend? They are someone who truly knows Christ, who is born again, who is led by and indwelt with the Spirit of the Lord. They stick with you even when you mess up. They forgive you. They are patient with you. They, well, love you with the love which is to be found only in Christ. They have been forgiven by the Lord because of Jesus, and those who really know this forgiveness are people who forgive. That “christian” who is like a fuse ready to be lit any second, knows nothing of these things. They will wash their hands of you because their hands have never been washed by the Cross.