Love: It Does a Body Good - A Family Devotional
Loving attitudes and actions don't just benefit others, they benefit us.
Bible Reading of the Day: Read 1 Corinthians 13:4-7.
Verse of the Day: “Let love be your highest goal” (1 Corinthians 14:1).
The doctor shook his head as he finished giving Dad a physical examination. “What’s wrong, Doctor?” Dad asked, buttoning his shirt. “Nothing!” the doctor answered, smiling. “I wish I had your blood pressure!” Dad laughed. “Well, that’s good news.”
“You bet it is,” the doctor answered. “I was talking to my brother-in-law yesterday. Now he’s a walking time bomb.” He shook his head sadly. “Sky-high blood pressure. High cholesterol count. Plus, he’s developing an ulcer.”
“Isn’t there something you can do for him?” Dad asked.
The doctor shrugged. “He takes medication,” he explained, “but that will accomplish very little unless he changes his life.” “What do you mean?” Dad asked.
The doctor sighed. “He had a fight with his brother fifteen years ago. They haven’t spoken two words to each other since, but his resentment and hatred for his brother are eating him alive. The effects of his hatred for his brother are literally killing him.”
Dad nodded. “I can believe that,” he said. “I think that’s part of the reason God wants us to love each other, because he knows how destructive hate can be, and how helpful and healthy love can be.”
The doctor fingered the stethoscope that hung around his neck. “You know, I think you’re right. I watch people spend thousands of dollars on medical treatment to help them combat stress. If they’d just be more like you, they might save money and make themselves healthier at the same time!”
“They don’t need to be more like me, Doc,” Dad said. “They need to be more like God: loving and forgiving. But you’re right. Loving attitudes and actions don’t just benefit others, they benefit us. That’s all part of God’s amazing wisdom. When he says ‘Love one another,’ he says it for our own good. Following his commands can help us avoid all sorts of unpleasant things.”
The doctor nodded thoughtfully.
“Of course,” Dad said, smiling slyly, “if everybody followed God’s commands to love each other, you might not get so much business.”
The doctor laughed. “That would be just fine with me! I could use the extra time to work on my golf game!”
“I know,” Dad said, smiling broadly. “I’ve seen you play.”
TO DISCUSS: Booker T. Washington once said, “I will not let any man reduce my soul to the level of hatred.” What do you think he meant by that? What can you do today and in the future to enjoy the benefits of following God’s commands to love each other?
TO PRAY: “Lord, help us to never let any man reduce our soul to the level of hatred. Instead, help us to show love, even when it’s hard to love.”