Walk in Love

So I found myself at the grocery store the other day, chatting with the cashier as she was ringing up my items at the register. Another customer had just left, and the cashier – we’ll call her Stella, since I don’t remember her name – was quite hot around the collar (and I mean that figuratively, as Stella was wearing a collar-less shirt).

But I digress.

I was concerned, so I gently asked Stella what had happened. She then went on to say how the prior customer had gotten quite upset with her for no particular reason, and was rather salty with her words.

Assuming this was an infrequent occurrence, I asked Stella if most customers were pleasant or like the lady who had just departed. Her answer shouldn’t have surprised me: while most people were pleasant, the ones who were unkind were really quite harsh. Mean, even.

I was wide-eyed at this point, as I simply could not fathom how blowing up at someone for something quite inconsequential could ever be a useful life strategy. Goodness gracious – if the store ran out of quinoa for some reason, then accept this reality and move on!

Of course, I had no idea whether the other woman who preceded me was upset about missing quinoa or some other matter, so I decided to keep my thoughts to myself (as an aside, there was an item that I had been looking for myself, but I wasn’t able to find it. I reckoned that it would be best not to mention it).

Stella went on to say that she held another part-time job, and that some customers there had been a little bit difficult and impatient there as well. Sadly, I had to admit that her observations were neither unique nor surprising, and I told her as much. We both were quiet for a moment, no doubt wondering silently, “Why are people behaving this way?”

Anyway, after Stella finished bagging up my groceries and I paid the bill, I thanked her by name (I remembered it that day, but am not recalling it now!) and then headed home.

Overall, the whole interaction got me thinking: where is the love?

People sure seem to be stressed out over trivial things, don’t you think? One thing goes wrong, and they throw tantrums that would put any toddler out there to shame. It’s as if they think that by getting angry and raising their voices, that the outcome will somehow be different. And if that particular approach doesn’t work for a two-year-old, why on earth would we assume that we would find success with it as adults?

Later in the week, I came across this verse from Ephesians 5, and I was reminded that we are called to behave in a different way. Particularly, as Christ followers, our behaviors, words, and thoughts should be characterized by love and gratitude. However, whether you believe in Jesus or not, how could showing respect and kindness for another person ever be a losing strategy?

Indeed, I like this verse because it reminds me that love is not only an emotion – it is action. Note that the verse encourages us to “walk in love,” and not simply stand or sit in it! Walking implies deliberate action and forward progress, and is an ongoing thing. And shouldn’t our loving behaviors toward others be characterized in similar terms?💡

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21 thoughts on “Walk in Love

  1. Interesting interaction you had there – I enjoyed reading about it – sadly that kind of thing does happen too often and I like to think that as we seek to act more Christlike we can maybe change the day into a better one for someone

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I think this is true in principle when people have experienced a great deal of pain and have not been able to process it in a healthy way. Usually, their focus turns inward (and away from others), and so people generally are not really concerned about what other people are thinking or feeling – just about getting their own frustrated emotions out for all to hear and see.

      The only way that any of us can really and truly love others is to receive the love that comes from a relationship with the Lord, and then to let His love shine through us for others to see and feel. Anything else that we attempt in our own strength will ultimately fail – we need Him desperately!

      Thanks for stopping by, Tiffany! I hope all is well for you and the teenager you asked me to pray about (you both are still on my prayer list).

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Amen, the prayer is working indeed. I’m currently looking for a new home. I’m asking God to point in the direction of my new home. Please keep me in prayer and that God will provide financial provision to make it happen. Amen!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. It is sad that we act this way, and I say we because I have caught myself losing my patience, and not being kind as I should be. For the most part I apologize, tell them it isn’t them. I am usually greeted with an “it’s ok” and I tell them that it is not. They are God’s children and I should treat them as such. It is miraculous how most, not all but most of these conversations lead to a discussion about God and His blessings. I always ask God to help me be kind to all of His children, no matter what I may be feeling. Then there are plenty of times when people are just downright mean to me. I always start praying for them because I don’t know what they are going through, what causes this meanness. One that comes to mind a young lady at taco bell. My she was being mean. I asked her was she ok, and she looked at me like she was going to slap me hahaha. She said no, it’s just everything. I said, “God loves you, you’re His child, and He fights for you” The expression on her face changed, and she said, “You are right, and I really needed to hear that today.” We had a brief but wonderful conversation about the LORD until my order was ready. Sorry for the looong comment but your writing today inspired me 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    1. That was a good comment Margaret.
      You and dailythankful seem to have a good perspective on how to deal with mean people.

      I regrettably don’t have as good of a record of dealing with mean people as y’all do, so I’m thankful for both of y’alls representations of how to better deal with these situations.

      Lord bless both of y’all.

      Liked by 3 people

    2. Wow, Margaret! What an incredible story about how God used you to minister to someone in a powerful way. I wonder what might have happened if you decided to match her mood or ignore her altogether! You both would have left the situation feeling a whole lot worse off, and instead, God got the glory (and you both felt better later!).

      Indeed, turning the other cheek is never easy – and is often painful – but sometimes, people are really touched when they see that we do not treat them the same way that they treated us.

      And I’m still very much a work in progress, too. I can be very blunt and impatient at times – especially when I think the next step is really obvious/clear – so the Lord is definitely still working on me in this area, too!

      Liked by 3 people

  3. You are inspiring many of us today! 😊 Here’s another long post:
    That correlates with what I was reading this morning in 2Cor 8 (v 9) For ye know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich.
    And with a passage I read yesterday, Phil 2.7 but emptied Himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in human likeness.
    Which all goes hand-in-hand with what God’s been teaching me these past few weeks: we are to empty ourselves, die to self, put our flesh aside; and be filled with God’s Holy Spirit, and live from that. That’s how Jesus never sinned: He put His flesh to death moment-by-moment (“gave Himself up for us”) and lived entirely in the power of God.
    What is it about us humans, that we are not able to do likewise? We have the same power of the Holy Spirit within us, yet we succumb to our flesh time and again.
    I do try to walk in love, to allow God to act through me, though I confess that my thoughts are not always Godly. Sometimes I leave, hoping that my actions came across more loving than my thoughts, but I think people can see in my eyes that I’m not as “good” as I’d like others to think.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. What a tender message, Kathy! Thank you for sharing it. In terms of poeple being inspired to write/comment on this blog, I never cease to be amazed how the Lord uses the posts that I think are just “meh” and people respond to them. Truly, it can only be the Lord, since I always feel a little tentative whenever I hit the “publish” button on WordPress. 🙂

      I can to what you say in this comment on several fronts! Thank you for sharing these great verses, too – it sounds like the Lord may be teaching us similar lessons around the same time. We keep forgetting the Spirit’s power resident within us, as you say, and choose the flesh because it somehow seems easier and more convenient to do so (usually with terrible consequences, though). Indeed, walking in love can be hard at times, and we all have bad days. Thank goodness for God’s grace, though! Even when we mess up and say/do the wrong things, He’s still there, loving us just as before.

      Grateful for you (I know that I say that regularly, but I mean it!). 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. And I am so grateful for YOU! 😊
        Rom 8.28, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” This is my go-to verse for when I mess up and pray God to fix it, lol 😁. I know I have consequences, and I know I have to forgive and/or ask forgiveness, but I know God is with me, and He will work to bless in ways I cannot imagine.

        Liked by 1 person

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