As we read through the Word of God, we find teachings and instructions that God has commanded us to follow. Some are easy to live out, while others are seemingly impossible. Take loving our neighbors for example, one of the hardest things that God has asked us to do is love the very people that persecute us, hurt us, and take advantage of us. Why would God ask us to do something that is impossible? Isn’t He just setting us up for failure? I don’t believe so. Ss I said in the beginning these commands are seemingly impossible, but not impossible. I believe that God has given us a road map to follow that will empower us to accomplish these impossible things.
For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this: “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” But if you bite and devour one another, beware lest you be consumed by one another! I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
When I read the passage this morning, God brought to mind a song called “Forgiveness” by Matthew West. The song itself is powerful, but the true power of God’s love is shown in the story behind the song. A man, who was driving drunk, caused a car accident that took the life of two young girls. The mother of one of the girls took a stand against drunk driving and began traveling to schools and community centers sharing the consequences of this man’s choice to drive drunk. The mother, Renee, felt like there was something missing from her presentation, forgiveness. Despite the court and societies approval on her anger, she knew she had to forgive. She reached out to the man in prison and began the journey of healing. If the story ended there it would be a great story, but wait there is more. Renee and members of her family went and pleaded the court to reduce the 22 year sentence in half. Renee and Eric, the drunk driver, travel around together sharing their story. Matthew West says, “She did the impossible.” Stories like this seem impossible to the flesh, because it goes against every human emotion and flesh desire. It is natural for us to want to bite and devour one another, especially those who have hurt us, but these natural emotions can consume us and spiritually kill us. This is a story that can only be made possible by the leading of the Spirit. In the words of the song “Forgiveness” by Matthew West, God has called us to “Love the unlovable…”, “reach the unreachable…”, and “do the impossible…”. God’s road map to accomplish the impossible is simply to walk in the Spirit. Really, it’s more like a GPS than a map. A map requires you to read it, plan your trip, think about heavy traffic and detours. The GPS automatically plans and factors those things in. When using the GPS all you have to do is turn it on, listen for the directions, and follow through. Stop trying to live life the way you want to; stop trying to fix your life on your own; stop trying to minister to people in your own flesh instead, stop, listen to, and follow the spirit. On your own, your trip may take longer or even take you to the wrong place, but if you walk in the spirit, you can accomplish the impossible that God called you to… even loving your neighbor can be done through the spirit.
Dear Heavenly Father, first I want to continue to pray for the families that were hurt in this situation. I also want to pray for Renee and Eric as they minister and share your story of forgiveness. God, we pray now, that you will allow your spirit to give us the strength to do the impossible. Show us how to love the unlovable and reach the unreachable. We know that it is only by your Spirit that we can navigate through life and accomplish the impossible. God, thank you for your forgiveness in our lives and help us love those around us. We pray this in the name or our Loving Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.