I am reading through the Psalms again,

always finding words, phrases, passages, thoughts I have not noticed before.

Here is today's finding ....

In Psalm 15 where King David asks,

"O Lord, who may abide in your tent?

Who many dwell on your holy hill?"

One of the answer he gives; one of the people who may live in God's presence is the one 

"who stand[s] by their oath even to their hurt ..."

Ponder that for a moment as we head into these final days of Advent,

these final days before the Christmas celebration is upon us with the gathering of

dysfunctional family,

the pressure on already pressured marriages,

the chaos of near strangers thrown together to make merry ...

What might it look like for those of us who follow Jesus to stand by the oath to love our neighbor as ourself

even when standing by that oath hurts us?

When we are disappointed once again in our family.

When Aunt Joan or Uncle Ricky shoot verbal barbs our way.

When we remember afresh why we don't often gather with our extended family.

Or, even when we are filled with joy and love toward our closest people, but still feel some hurt and pain over not feeling fully understood.

Meditate on this idea, my friends:

God is close to those who stand by their oath even to their own hurt.

For that is what God did for us in Christ.

Loved us, redeemed us, saved us, rescued us, kept his oath to us

even to his own hurt.

And now we are called to follow in his footsteps.

You got this ...

Love til it hurts. This is the way of Jesus the Christ.