Romans 12:9 “Let love be without dissimulation.”
Have you ever hit a bump in the road with someone you sincerely love? I was remembering yesterday of a situation I had once encountered. I was in the middle of a painful disappointment brought on by someone I sincerely loved as a friend. He had lied to my face and behind my back about something in order to accomplish an agenda he was pursing. In his mind, the end justified the means. This may have been an ongoing and slight flaw in his character as it wasn’t the first time, just the first time it had directly affected me a very negative way.
The little innocuous lies told in order to get what he wanted might have seemed harmless to him, but they had devastatingly painful results touching areas my life. It caused great turmoil in my heart and the devil was having a heyday supplying every evil imagination that I was willing to entertain – my bad! It felt like there was this mental dismantling of what I considered a precious friendship and I was not okay with that. You don’t let disruptions in relationships lead you to tossing friendships always like they were Kleenex. Though I felt hurt, I knew I would have to sit down with this person and have a heart to heart talk. I couldn’t attack, vent, and let emotions and anger spew. I would have to first reflect and express the appreciation I had for our relationship and the value I’ve always counted it to be in my life. Then I would had to prayerfully and calmly present the facts as I knew and understood them to be and hope that honesty and truth and greater understanding would come – and hopefully a sincere apology. The trust may have been fractured but it could be rebuilt.
When the time came for us to sit down and talk, I could literally feel the awkwardness of his beginning words toward me. At least at first, they weren’t carrying a repentive attitude. I could immediately feel a wall erecting in my heart. I was feeling how I didn’t want to feel – guarded and distrusting. The imaginations I had allowed from the pain I felt had done damage. I was actually surprised because as I said, this person was a sincere friend. Yet there I was feeling like I was talking to a lying jerk who threw me under the bus.
It really bothered me that I felt this way – regardless of what he had done. It was at that moment that the Lord had flashed some words of scripture that I had been meditating on that very morning. As I remembered those words, I knew instantly that the Lord had been preparing me this encounter. The Words the Lord reminded me of are today’s Fresh Manna – “Let love be without dissimulation.”
The word dissimulation in its original Greek form implies “Let love be sincere.” Let it be without hypocrisy – don’t let it be fake. Don’t’ put on a smile and pretend to love someone and then as you walk away roll your eyes or say something mean or cruel to someone else about that person. That is dissimulation. This is something that is done every day. Fake love which is not love at all – is given out every day.
The Lord has taught me in this over the years because I knew I had been guilty of it in the past and didn’t want to be. I asked the Lord to help me be sincere in my love toward others. He really taught me how simple it is. He said, “Tim, when you love people with your love, it is often measured by there performance or behavior or their love back toward you.” He continued, “My love is pure. It is honest. It is merciful. It is forgiving. It is patient. It isn’t looking for perfection of performance. IT COMES AS A GIFT! If you love people through my eyes and with my heart, you’ll find it easy.” It was amazing how those words and that revelation transformed my life. I learned that I put my arms around just about anyone giving them a bear hug and love that was from God’s throne and not from my limited heart. It literally expanded my capacity and ability to love. I knew it was how God first loved me and continued to love me.
So when I was sitting there with my friend, I had to come looking for honest discourse while letting my heart be filled with forgiveness and a willingness and desire to repair what was fractured. God reminded me of that and it helped me so much!
Over the years, I have always tried to take this approach. The results do vary, but, I have learned how important it is to let sincere love lead the way. Being fake doesn’t let healing happen. Looking for vengeance or to chew someone out doesn’t contribute to healing. Putting someone in their place doesn’t help healing happen. Sincerely loving, having a willingness to forgive, and acknowledging my own failures in the very thing I am upset at someone else for, helps. Acknowledging the love and forgiveness of the Lord is what helps healing to come and precious and valuable friendships to be saved. Proverbs 17:9 says, “He who covers over an offense seeks out and works toward the promotion of love, but whoever repeats the matter separates close friends.”
Friendships are valuable. But the truth is, all relationships are valuable. Relationships are the primary way God reaches people. Relationships are the primary way God brings blessing into our lives. So, let your love be sincere. Let it rise up out of the same love God in His mercy and grace has extended to you. His love is unlimited and our love can be expanded!
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
Published by Pastor Tim Burt
Copyright© 2008 Tim Burt, All rights reserved