Be The First To Love

“This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.” -1 John 4:10

When faced with situations that we’d like to see change in we’re often tempted to believe it’s “the other person” who needs to do the changing. We’ve heard expressions like “Be the change you want to see” and there’s a lot of truth in that. I would like to add to it, “Be the first to love”.

“Be the first to love” is the up close and personal version of “Be the change you want to see”.

It’s the kind of love God demonstrated toward us when we were far away from Him and in need of reconciliation.

God didn’t wait for us to make the first move to repair our broken relationship. When humanity walked away from God, God opened His heart and extended His hand to humanity!

That kind of love changes the world.

One thing you’ll notice about God is that He is always the first to love!

A core principle of scripture is that God is always and forever the initiator. He doesn’t wait for us to get our act together or for us to love Him first.

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”-Romans 5:8

We can follow in His footsteps by being “the first to love” in difficult situations.

Instead of waiting for people in your life to come around to your way of thinking, love them! Instead of waiting for people to appreciate you, appreciate them! Be the first to love! Throw away your pride and be the change you want to see; be the first to love.

It may require sacrifice on your part, but isn’t that what God showed us when He sent his Son?

God had to actually put His intentions to love us into action.

In His case He was choosing to love people who had turned their back on Him.

They didn’t appreciate Jesus while He walked the Earth, and they might never appreciate the sacrifice He was making by dying for them- but He did it anyway.

That’s what “being the first to love” is all about.

So many times we’re waiting for others to make the first move.

You know what? Most of the time people are NOT going to be what you want them to be, because the truth is, they’re saying the same thing you are! They want YOU to change! They want you to be the first to love, the first to reach out, the first to say “I’m sorry”.

You get that, right?

So the powerful thing here is that you can be the one to break the cycle, to tear down the wall, to clear the impasse.

If you put yourself out there you might get hurt, right?

I’m not going to lie, there’s a good chance that might happen.

Even so, I’d rather¬†follow the footprints of Jesus and be the first to love.