It's a challenge, but we must learn to love difficult people.
It's a challenge, but we must learn to love difficult people. (Flickr )

One of the most important skills we can develop as we walk with Christ is to love difficult people. Here are four methods Jesus modeled when he encountered them:

  • Realize you can't please everybody. Even God can't do that! Refuse to play games (Matt. 22:18).
  • Learn to say no to unrealistic expectations. Confront them by "speaking the truth in love"(Eph. 4:15a).
  • Never retaliate (Matt. 5:38-39). It only lowers you to their level.
  • Pray for them (Matt. 5:44). It will help both of you. Let God speak to them.

Use these methods to learn to love the difficult people in your life so you can become more like Jesus.

Talk It Over

  • How will it help if you pray for people who are difficult?
  • What does it mean to speak the truth in love?
  • Why do you think we often have the urge to please even the difficult people in our lives?

Rick Warren is the founding pastor of Saddleback Church. His book, The Purpose Driven Church, was named one of the 100 Christian books that changed the 20th century. He is also founder of pastors.com, a global Internet community for pastors.

For the original article, visit pastorrick.org.

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