As much as it takes…

“They just don’t listen. Seriously. I am trying, but they just don’t want to hear it.”

I don’t know how many times over the years I have said this. Been discouraged that messages of love and kindness are rejected. Disillusioned by watching those I’ve tried to guide make unwise choice after unwise choice. Been treated poorly in the process.

Even as I sit here writing this, we are just home from church, and I’ve endured a litany of ungratefulness, disrespect, and sass from two that just left the place in which they are supposed to be learning to be His “light.”

I sit here reflecting on the many times I’ve been yelled at for simply discussing alternate choices, and the consequences of not making them.

The times kindness has been rejected.

The times wisdom has been scoffed at.

The times when love has not felt like enough.

I wonder in those times what I am doing wrong? Why they don’t hear the message? Why I continue to suffer for doing good?

“The Son of Man must suffer terribly and be rejected by this generation.” Luke 17:25

That generation rejected wisdom, guidance, and love.

And so does this one.

Because not much has changed over the years. No one wants a Savior, because our false belief has us convinced we can save ourselves.

Just like the Pharisees that wanted Jesus killed, because they rejected His teaching, we all want to believe our way is best. That we have it all figured out.

We don’t desire truth, because we look to media and other worldly things to define it.

Yet as Jesus lay dying, rejected, suffering on a cross-He was still able to utter these words: “Father forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34)

And if He could-the One who suffered, who was despised much more than I…

So can I.

So I can pray that I can keep loving.

Even when it’s hard. Even when I am exhausted. When it’s rejected. Taken advantage of, or simply not good enough. Even through suffering.

I can pray that as I ask God, How much do I allow? How many times do I have to forgive? How long do I suffer?

He will tell me this: As much as it takes. As many times as it takes. As long as it takes. Until they see love and kindness in you, and finally know Me.

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