As most of you know I am an introvert, so it is sometimes hard to show those feelings in public. Holding hands or a quick kiss is ok, but anything more than that and I am uncomfortable. Again referring back to my kids, get a room!
One area of PDA that I do work on is in my relationship to God. Jesus said the greatest commandment was this, to love God first and then to love your neighbor as yourself. And the best way to show that I truly love God is to follow His words in John 13:34-35,
"A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” We show our love for God when we are able to love each other. Phillipians 2:1-4 says this, "make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others."
It is easy to say we love God and follow Jesus. It is more difficult when we are told that we are to love each other. It's pretty easy to love when others are kind to us. It is easy to be nice when the other person is gracious and giving. How about when the other person is hard to live with. When they are hateful and manipulative. When they are out for their own good and not yours? Not so easy then is it? Our love for each other through Christ is to be unconditional. That is a hard pill to swallow sometimes. Even criminals seem to somewhat have a code of conduct. Read what it says in Luke 6:27-36 and you will see that we indeed as Christians walk a narrow ridge...“But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you. If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful." It doesn't say to do this when it is all sunshine, unicorns and glitter. It says to just do it. That is the hardest thing to do when it seems against our own best interests. But we have to remember, God knows our best interests better than we do. He knows the lessons we need to learn, the areas in our life that need to be smoothed out. Look at what is says in verse 27 above, it says 'to those who listen'. Not those who just hear, but those who truly listen. Do we hear and then obey? Or do we hear and say, that's not for me.
Believe me, this is a hard one for me. I struggle between being obedient and saying, hey what about me? But God says that in being obedient, I become more Christ-like. That more than anything is truly my heart's desire. I want my Father to take joy in my behavior, and often that means, not my will, but thine. Lord, give me your heart for people. For all people, not just the ones I am comfortable with, not just the ones I have something in common with. Not just the ones who look good, smell good, make me feel good. Lord, as the song says, break my heart for what breaks yours. And His heart always breaks for people. Why else would His PDA, public display of affection, love and passion include allowing His only Son to die on the cross for our sins? Lord, not only in deed, but also in thought give me your heart, your unconditional love for others. Fill me with your love, your charity, your passion.
So, here's the PSA (for those in the know, that's Public Service Announcement) for today...let your PDA's be a Perfect Display of the Almighty...and His love.