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Training in Love

What if the hardships we face could be seen as training in love?

I’ve been reading John Mark Comer’s latest book, Practicing the Way. He mentions that there are two different groups of people who hang around Jesus in the stories we have about his time on earth. There are the crowds. And there are the disciples.

The crowds got miracles and teachings. They heard beautiful sermons and intriguing stories. They watched healings and feasted on unexpected bread and fish and wine. And then they went back to their ordinary lives.

The disciples heard the same teachings, and they witnessed the miracles, but it was different for them. They left family and friends behind to follow Jesus. Jesus didn’t just preach to them, he told them to go out and tell people about God’s presence among them. He didn’t perform miracles for them, at least not that we know of. Instead, he asked them to participate in the miraculous through service. And he didn’t send them home with a full belly and a nice message. Instead, he sent them into stormy seas, into hostile territory.

Jesus spent his time on earth teaching and healing the crowds while at the same time he was training the disciples—often through really hard experiences—so that they could do likewise. So that they could weather the storms and endure the persecutions and bear witness to truth and beauty and justice and love even amidst powerful forces that wanted to suppress them.

What if some of the hard experiences you are facing are actually training you to live in love?

dark-tinted photo of a purple and a yellow tulip with semi-transparent circle in the middle of the graphic with text inside that says, "What if the hardships we face could be seen as training in love?"


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