How many times do you struggle to love someone who is difficult to you? I remember I used to ride the bus to school and one girl always seemed to go out of her way to be mean to others. No matter what I did or said, she always seemed to have it out for me. From calling me mean names to making comments about my clothing she was one of meanest people I had ever met.
Loving someone like this girl can be really difficult. People who are unkind are hard to love. So how do we do it? How do we handle all the difficult people and difficult personalities?
Step One – Realize Their Value to God
Regardless of how that person treats you, they have value to God. They were created for a purpose, and even if they’re far from God, God loves them and wants to have a relationship with them.
Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous–how well I know it. – Psalm 139:14 (NLT)
God loves difficult people. He might not approve their actions but He loves them and wants a relationship with them. When you realize that they’re important to God it helps you be able to love them better.
Step Two – Realize Your Value To God
Just like the difficult person has value to God, you have value to him too. Never let another person and how they treat you determine your value. If you place your worth in how others treat you or what they think of you, you’ll always come up short.
Your value should be firmly planted in what God says about you. Just because someone isn’t kind to you doesn’t mean that you’re not important. You have value to God and His opinion is the one that counts.
How precious are your thoughts about me, O God. They cannot be numbered! – Psalm 139:17
God is thinking about you. That shows your value to God. You’re important to Him. He loves you and knows you and wants the best for you. Choose to believe the value God places on your life.
Step Three – Choose to Love
Regardless of how the mean person is treating you, you can choose to love them. They might not be right in how they treat you, but you can choose to love them. Ask God to show you ways to get along with them better. And choose to treat them with respect even when they aren’t doing the right thing to you.
Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples. – John 13:35
Choose to love others. Show the world the love of Jesus by loving others. This doesn’t mean that you’ll be best friends with people who are mean, but you don’t have to return their meanness with meanness. You can love them, pray for them, and do good to them.
If you’re a youth leader, here are some discussion questions you can use with your youth group.