Living in world with difficult people is inevitable. With a world so filled with sin, brokenness and heartache, it is not hard for you to think of one difficult person in your life. Maybe it is that friend from school who is always making the same mistakes (no matter how many times you have advised them not to). Maybe it is someone from your work who always takes the credit for your ideas in the morning meetings. Maybe it is even a family member, who is always telling you about how much of a failure you are. Whoever it is, their presence in your life just proves that difficult people are everywhere, and many of us know that loving someone when they are being difficult is really hard. This is because when something is harder than usual, it seems easier to give up on it than to actually journey with it. However, just because someone is hard to love, does not mean they are not worthy of love. Here is how we can love difficult people:
We love them
The first step in loving a difficult person is to actually love them. You do not do this by saying you love them and then loving them from a distance, you do this by actually loving on them with a full heart. This is probably one of the hardest things to do when it comes to difficult people but it is also one of the most needed things for difficult people. You do not know why people are the way they are but the only way you can get to know them is by showing them love, when no one else will. This also leaves room for them to open up to you and possibly become less difficult.
We pray for them
Prayer is so important when it comes to difficult people. Prayer is so powerful in seeing a situation do a complete turn around. This is why it is so important to pray for people who are difficult. By pray, I do not mean that you should pray that they will stop being difficult and make your life easier (because frankly, it’s not about that). It is about praying for a change of heart and the love of God to come into the lives of these difficult people so that they will want to be better for themselves, not for you.
We become their friend
This is where you need to swallow your pride and keep on being present in their life, even when you really do not want to. Why? Because just like a lighthouse guides a boat back, that is lost at sea, so will your friendship guide a difficult person home. Everyone needs friendship and fellowship and so denying someone this due to their difficult ways, will not open their heart but only harden it. This is why fellowship with difficult people and all people is so important.
So here’s to loving people through the hard times. Because not everyone you encounter is going to be easy to love but when you choose to love them you are choosing to spread light and light always casts out darkness in the end.