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September 19, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.”—1 Peter 4:8 (NLT)
Living in South Florida my entire life, I’ve seen my fair share of insane thunderstorms, tropical depressions, tropical storms, and hurricanes. From Wilma, to Katrina, to Arlene, I have been in the proverbial eye of several storms, but none was more terrifying than 1992’s Hurricane Andrew. I remember being a child, so scared, as the winds and rain bore down on our home. At one point, the front door even flew open. It was an experience I’ve never forgotten . . . one that makes me extra jumpy when hurricane season rolls around each year.
Now, the interesting thing about living through a storm like Andrew, which tore through Miami in about six hours, was the aftermath. The destruction was massive, countless lives changed, homes leveled. It was utter devastation. How do you recover? Where do you begin the reparation process?
You know, a lot of times, conflict, especially marital conflict, can feel like Hurricane Andrew. Sometimes, mistakes can be made, hurtful words can be uttered, things can escalate to such a degree that it seems almost impossible to recover. And even worse, sometimes, you just don’t even know where to start picking up the broken pieces. If you’ve ever experienced this, if you’re currently experiencing it, or if you’ve ever wondered about this, I want you to know that there is a starting point. There is a place where recovery and restoration can happen: love.
In 1 Peter 4:8, the apostle tells us to “show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.” Regarding this principle, theologian Albert Barnes wrote, “True love to another makes us kind to his imperfections, charitable toward his faults.” I love this. It reminds me of 1 Corinthians 13, where Paul tells us that love keeps no record of wrongs. There is no greater balm, no sweeter medicine, no stronger bridge than agapē love. Why? Because it is a divine love poured into us by God for us to pour out unto others. And there is no other relationship that needs a daily watering of agapē like our marriages.
As we experience the devastation of conflict, always remember to “clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony” (Colossians 3:14 NLT). Is it easy? No. Will it be instant? No. Recovery always takes time and effort. It will require hard work to pick up the broken pieces and repair. But as long as agapē love is your starting point, true rebuilding can take place.
DIG: Read 1 Corinthians 13.
DISCOVER: Have you experienced deep conflict with someone? How did you recover? Have you recovered? What steps were taken for repair?
DISPLAY: Are you in the midst of conflict? If so, pray and ask the Lord for His supernatural agapē love to fill you, so that forgiveness, healing, and restoration are possible. If you’re not in conflict at the moment, ask for a fresh outpouring of His love, because conflict is around the corner.
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Danny Saavedra has served on the staff of Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.