Monday, April 09, 2007

stung

there once was a hindu holy man who saw a scorpion floundering around in the water. he decided to save it by stretching out his finger. but the scorpion stung him. the man still tried to get the scorpion out of the water, but the scorpion stung him again. a man nearby told him to stop saving the scorpion that kept stinging him. but the holy man said, "it is the nature of the scorpion to sting. it is my nature my love. why should i give up my nature to love just because it is the nature of the scorpion to sting?"

it should be our nature to love regardless of who we are, regardless of what has been done to us. its hard. i know. trust me. people are always going to sting you. they are going to rip into your character. they are going to be the ones in the platform telling you that your views are wrong. they are going to be in the pulpits pointing fingers in judgement. they are going to be the ones who hold your whole race responsible for the actions of one person's actions.

but that doesn't give you the right to despise; for hate for those who hate is still hate. in spite of those who may sting you remain in what you know to be your nature. love.

62 comments:

Kaila said...

If the Hindu nature is like this, then I see why you were so intrigued by it when you were in search for your God before you became Christian.

David Malcolm said...

I confess it's often tough to go on caring for people who are resistant to your care, or who soak it up but simply drain you. There's always a necessary element of self care. For if you let one person drain you entirely in one month, you will not be able to continue helping people in five years. On the other hand if you allow yourself to never help others and last for five years, what had been your point aside from survival?

Holiday At The Sea said...

I struggle with this a lot lately it seems. Sometimes they are stinging me directly so to speak, but I have to keep reminding myself to turn the other cheek. Other times it is someone who really bothers me, but I need to remember to show love for them anyway.

Thank you for this. It really came at the time I needed to hear it, since I have really been struggling with this more lately.

God bless.

sarah.elaine said...

i don't think you can even comprehend how great that post was for me!

this is exactly the thing that has been on my heart recently!
so many of my journal entries in the past couple of days have been on the exact topic of the constant struggle to love those who make it so hard for me to love.
i so terribly want to love the outcast and downtrodden.
but so many times they are that way on their own accord because they force people away.

that is quite possibly the biggest struggle in my life...just getting over my stupid selfish self and loving them regardless.
that was such an incredible story to keep me inspired and keep persisting in loving everyone...
even despite their "stinging" nature! thank you! :)

.love.

hakunnamatuna said...

the one word i have chosen to take out of my vocabulary a couple of weeks ago, has just been written about your inspiring blog. i completely agree.

Christopher Cummings said...

It's so hard to withstand the stings. And they are so frequent. Sometimes it is so much easier in the present to resort to hate, but so much more harmful in the future. And now we live in a "presently convenient" society.

Anonymous said...

It seems to me to be the meat of Matthew 5 to live with generosity. In verses 43-47, particularly v45, Eugene Peterson paraphrases it in the Message that when someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer...it is then that you are living like your true selves, your God-created selves, for this is what God does. He gives His best to everyone, good or bad.

This tells me then that we have this original concept woven into our hearts, so to speak of our own "nature" would refer to the same thing. I tend to think that with every action, every encounter, we have 2 ways to react. It's like those choose-your-own-ending books from when we were kids. We can either bring the world a glimpse of Heaven, or we can choose to cast it further into the depths of Hell.

On one hand it's a good thing I have few enemies. On the other, it makes dealing with them all the more important to embrace and learn from. It makes me realize I have more pride than I ever would have assumed. I guess that in itself is prideful. Your post aligns pretty well with what I've been seeing in myself lately, things I need to address. It's like that old Supertones song, curses and blessing from the same mouth. I'm so far from who I want to be. I pray that love, hardcore, real love, bridges the gap between where I stand and where I'm going.

Thanks bro. :)
Stephanie.

Katie said...

i got into a big fight with one of my best friends today, and i needed this post. however, in the story i am the scorpion, not the holy man. i am reached out to again and again, and each time i become afraid and sting.
i'm learning how to love, to trust, but i am still skittish, and so often i turn back to stinging.

Antoinette said...

I'm probably the worst at this. The second anybody lets me know they dislike me, I withdraw and end up not liking them either, but without any actual good reason. Sometimes I find it hard to love at all, but I'm doing better each day.

Jess said...

This is so true. I think it's especially important as Christians to be loving to everyone. I think I often judge people before i know them, or if they say 'sting' me, i will give up.

Thanks, it's really encouraging to know. Your blogs are really thought provoking. It's good to read some honest thoughts about the world, and to share how we can change it. But really, thank you. It's a challenge that i'm goign to try to live out. :)

Anonymous said...

i couldn't agree more Steve. a clever and compelling illustration.

Mark said...

thats such a good and simple illistration. It reminds me a lot of Martin Luther King Jr's quote on hate being a decending spiral, and I'm glad that such a positive view can transcend faith systems.

It also is a reminder to me to love a friend of mine who recently hurt me, and I thank you.

Book of James said...

Stephen, this has been an exceptionally tough one. Along with love comes the act of forgiveness. I immediately think of people in abusive relationships. A woman that continues to stay with a man that beats her. Some times the greatest act of love is to leave. At some point there is preservation. Preservation of self, health, and dignity.

Forgiveness is a precious gift that allows the forgiver to continue to love.

Then there are the silent screams of those that can’t leave. I think of the children in the US and around the world that suffer stings that we may never feel, but we know they are there.

We must continue to love.

Julia said...

I'm torn because my initial reaction was yeah quit getting stung! Then I see everyone's comments about how it's a struggle but a necessary one....and somehow I want to agree..want to have as "noble" a reaction, but i'm still sitting here thinking it's wrong to encourage someone being abused for the sake of the abuser. Beyond the Scorpion analogy at this point. There are TONS of loving people in this world and they are needed, but there is something in the nature of those who abuse that seek out the giving and loving because of their nature. I have experienced both sides of this coin in my life unfortunately.....but it is the truth. I think we all at some point are the recievers and givers of both love and pain.

I keep thinking there are other ways to help without being "stung" why not get a stick and try and nudge the Scorpion out of the water. Why continue to get stung when you can use a other means of help while also sparing yourself some unnecessary pain.

Also on another point that sounds less selfish. Sometimes when we love people and we want to help we are blinded by what is best for them and our helping isn't really helping. Sometimes it's best to get someone else to help because they are better equip to deal with the stinging Scorpion. So by being stung- although appearing noble is actually not helping the situation at all-- in fact only prolonging the struggle. Again another reason to grab a stick to help along the goal of getting the Scorpion out of the water.

Just some thoughts ~ J

Anonymous said...

But a scorpions sting is still poisonous. Love, even of the general kind, makes you so vulnerable and there are limits to the damage one can handle and overcome.

Also, you cannot give what you don't have - I think it's only possible to give so much love when you realize how much God loves us.
I DO NOT!! mean to claim that only christians can love, but I really wonder where non-believers would find the love and energy it takes to truly love unconditionally like you described. All I know is that whenever I "reach" that state (rarely...) it's absolutely not because of my good intentions, it's rather something external that makes me able to do it.

thelost&found said...

CS Lewis once said that “to love at all is to be vulnerable,” and that “The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell."
Love hurts. It tortures the soul. But Hate destroys it.

Just Alice. said...

I've never heard it described in that way.
Very well put.

emily said...

this post relates exactly to what i've been going through lately.
"people are always going to sting you. they are going to rip into your character. they are going to be the ones in the platform telling you that your views are wrong. they are going to be in the pulpits pointing fingers in judgement." especially concerning judging others. you just reminded me once again that it doesn't matter what someone does to you or to someone close to you, you should still love them. and i guess i needed something like this right now. thank you so much for this post, but also for all of your other ones. they inspire me so much.

emily said...

i just realized what this song this post reminded me of, Farewell to Arms by Five Iron Frenzy.

You said, "Down with the church", with your fists up in the air,
all the rancor and the hate, yeah we saw your frigid stare.
You hate Christianity, but love your animosity,
it's the church who's getting rotten, yet it's Christ that you've forgotten.

Goodnight, goodbye, farewell to arms, it's time.
Goodnight, goodbye, farewell to arms, it's time.
Lay down your hate, (the burden and) the weight will disappear.
If you could separate your anger, from that still small voice you hear.

Clench your fists and grit your teeth, save forgiveness for the weak.
Let your bitterness consume, let the salt rub in your wounds.
You have saved up all your spite, stoked the flame that keeps the fight,
it's so hard to be objective, when your reason is defective.

Goodnight, goodbye, farewell to arms, it's time.
Goodnight, goodbye, farewell to arms, it's time.
Lay down your hate, (the burden and) the weight will disappear.
If you could separate your anger, from that still small voice you hear.

You say that you've aged, I think you're just enraged.
You say that you've aged, I think you're just enraged.

Goodnight, goodbye, farewell to arms, it's time.
Goodnight, goodbye, farewell to arms, it's time.
Who incited, what ignited, all this hatred, say farewell to arms.
(Goodnight, goodbye, farewell to arms, it's time.)
Broken hearted, dearly departed, maybe we should say farewell to arms.

aznsong50 said...

That's a beautiful lesson.

And, Emily, THANK YOU for the FIF reference! I miss them so much!

Corey Mann said...

Its easy to say in a paragraph, but living it out is a whole other deal.
The human soul can only take stings so many times. It's like "Sting me once, shame on you", "Sting me twice, shame on me."
I don't think God's idea for our lives is to get stung on a consistant basis.

miksiemanym said...

That Five Iron song is really good. To Love will always be a struggle but it's a struggle worth fighting, a struggle worth consuming your entire life with.

Cody Hill said...

THE BEE STING

A vacationing family drives along in their car, windows rolled down, enjoying the warm summer breeze of the sunny day.

All of a sudden a big black bee darts in the window and starts buzzing around inside the car. A little girl, highly allergic to bee stings, cringes in the back seat. If she is stung, she could die within an hour.

"Oh, Daddy," she squeals in terror. "It's a bee! It's going to sting me!"

The father pulls the car over to a stop, and reaches back to try to catch the bee. Buzzing around towards him, the bee bumps against the front windshield where the father traps it in his fist.
Holding it in his closed hand, the father waits for the inevitable sting. The bee stings the father's hand and in pain, the father lets go of the bee.

The bee is loose in the car again. The little girl again panics.

"Daddy, it's going to sting me!"

The father gently says, "No honey, he's not going to sting you now. Look at my hand."
She sees the bee's stinger in his hand.

Likewise, Jesus says to us, "Look at my hands."

He has Satan's sting, the sting of death, the sting of sin, the sting of deceit.
Jesus has all of those stingers in His hands.

When you see that nail-scarred hand, realize that, on your behalf, Jesus took all the pain that Satan could throw at Him.

He reduced Satan to a big black bee that's lost its stinger -- all Satan can do is buzz.
That's the victory that Jesus won for you!

--This story was told by Frank Peretti on the Focus on the Family Radio Program

cody hill said...

This metaphor is my most favorite symbols of sacrifice. In a world without sacrifice, we would slowly forget how to love.

themockingbyrd said...

Interestingly enough, that's the same conclusion I've come to recently; that people will always let me down, and yet, as it says, it is in my blood to love people, and if I'm going to do it anyway, I may as well do it as enthusiastically as possible.

I think of it as a form of reverse-cynicism.

Sarah said...

people are more valuable than scorpions (sorry animal lovers) and the value of a human soul that needs healing and love is worth loving and risking some sting

but anyone who is choosing bad company and getting entangled in corruption or abuse or just bad friendships (with people who are NOT your friends)
may truly need to walk away--either permanantly or for a time.

its a good illustration, but have some distintion btwn what is healthy and loving and what is just dumb....

"bad company corrupts good character"

if you are moving toward health or good character, do what you need to do to do what is right for you.
you can walk away from those whose sting is meant to keep you down...

Michelle said...

wonderful, wonderful stories, both about the scorpion sting and the bee sting. thank you both for sharing, and for the reminders.

--

9-10Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it. Run for dear life from evil; hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle.

11-13Don't burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don't quit in hard times; pray all the harder. Help needy Christians; be inventive in hospitality.

14-16Bless your enemies; no cursing under your breath. Laugh with your happy friends when they're happy; share tears when they're down. Get along with each other; don't be stuck-up. Make friends with nobodies; don't be the great somebody.

17-19Don't hit back; discover beauty in everyone. If you've got it in you, get along with everybody. Don't insist on getting even; that's not for you to do. "I'll do the judging," says God. "I'll take care of it."

20-21Our Scriptures tell us that if you see your enemy hungry, go buy that person lunch, or if he's thirsty, get him a drink. Your generosity will surprise him with goodness. Don't let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good.

- Romans 12:9-21 (The Message)

Anonymous said...

beautiful ♡
what the world needs

Anonymous said...

"I don't think God's idea for our lives is to get stung on a consistant basis."
- corey mann (commented before)

I know what you mean. I think we have to use our common sense, but not too much - because loving everyone around you enemies included is simply not a sensible task. "Love like you've never been hurt" that's what they say.. Loving is so much more difficult than simply not-hating.

unwinding said...

in a way i agree.
but also, in a way i disagree.. as odd as it seems.

maybe not exactly 'disagreeing'... but i'm not sure how else to put it.

i think... what makes love so strong, is because people do hate, and people do despise. that does not justice it, but... true love to me, is a love that has struggled, that has been ripped and stabbed and hurt... a love that bleeds; not a love that sits up above struggle & conflict.
a love that knows and understands conflict, not a love that sees conflict.

i think that what makes love so beautiful is because, sometimes, it's not our nature to love.

honestly... i disagree that it should be people's nature to love.
for some reason, that to me... it... would make the world less beautiful... as if some light [ as if something ].. would be lost.

people will judge, people will be annoying, people will be hateful. it is not right, and it is a ugly thing. so many people have shaped by hurt... and pain spreads, infesting the soul and killing. but pain indirectly makes love what it is: beautiful, powerful, and healing.

without pain, without hate, love would be nothing.
and i think what makes the difference between living and being dead is seeing that.
[at least in my opinion...]

shining a candle in a the darkest corner will be brighter then shining a candle where there's already light.
[ twloha ]

my pain only allows me to love more; it only allows me to become more a l i v e.

Janelle said...

I think this is one of those times where I really needed to hear something like this. It's so very true.

Chris said...

What do you do when you know that you sting back, and you know that it's wrong...

...but in 'the' moment, you can't stop yourself.

Do you pray for love? Or peace?

In regards to my parents at least, I feel sometimes as if, even when I return their sarcasm with peace or surrender, they walk away just thinking they were completely without fault. Like they were never kids who had dreams that weren't bound and chained to a sad life.

How will things change then? I mean I agree with you 100% man. Love is the most excellent way. But on the real?

Sometimes it's just...Hard.

Meghan Fife said...

"[Love] always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails." (1 Cor. 13:7-8

Read it again. And again. Again. One more time.

I'm going to.

Kates (Adelaide) said...

Stephen, I just wanted to qualify my comment by first saying that I’ve been reading Modesty for while now and I love it. I find your thoughts always interesting, challenging and insightful. So I’m sorry that my first comment is one of slight disagreement.

While I agree with the general sentiments and purpose of this story (love others regardless of how they treat you), I must say I disagree that it is in our nature to love.

As a follower of Christ, I believe (and theology states) that we are all born into sin, with a sinful nature and are separated from God (a separation that can only be overcome by salvation in Jesus Christ). If, as the Bible states in 1 John 4:8, “God is love”...then love cannot be part of our human nature. Indeed, 1 John 4:7 says “love comes from God”.

I think that the reason loving other people (especially people who wrong us and do not love us) is so difficult is due to the fact that love is not in our nature.

When I first read this story about the holy man and the scorpion, it struck me as being a perfect representation of God’s love for me. I think that it is God’s nature to love and it is my nature to sting. And no matter what I do, how much I turn from Him, ignore Him, disobey His will and “sting” Him... He always forgives me and is right there, ready to lift me from the overwhelming trouble I find myself drowning in.

It is this love that we must strive to emulate towards those around us. But it’s tough and at times we will fail... because as members of an imperfect and fallen race it is not in our nature.

Just my thoughts and interpretation...thanks for the opportunity to share!

Kates

Raechel said...

That and trusting Jesus enough to show oneself to love as such are among the hardest things.

lizzy said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
lizzy said...

i like the idea of making it 'in my nature' to love. it seems so natural to despise someone because of what they are, and i forget that perhaps it matters more who i am, and what God wants to make of me.

Anonymous said...

Stephen,
I loved that illistration. I know that for me, that is my ultimate goal, to love no matter what even when they hurt me or others. I will never copletely reach that goal but my new goal is to remember that actions speak louder than words. My actions have no always reflected what i say or believe. Thank you for posting this.
~Mirissa

Brightest said...

i'm not sure i agree with the stinging scorpian part. if somebody keeps hurting us over, and over, and over, we shouldn't keep letting ourselves get stung. at some point we have to say "hey scorpian, enough. i'm done."

even if it is our nature to love, it's not everybody's, and they will sting us. we have to protect ourselves, because sometimes in the end that's all we have.

Book of James said...

It strikes me that there is an interesting connection between the parable you gave us and the one that follows.

“There was a turtle that was approaching a rain swollen stream and heard a voice call out. The Turtle turned it head and saw a scorpion. The scorpion said to the turtle; the stream is deep and swollen and if I try to cross I will surely drown. Would you please let me ride on your shell so that I can cross the stream? The turtle said, if I let you ride on my shell you will sting me and I will drown. The scorpion pleaded with the turtle and told him I will not sting you because if I sting you I will drown as well. The turtle reluctantly agreed and they set out across the stream. In the middle of the stream the scorpion stung the turtle. As the turtle started to go under he asked why the scorpion had stung him knowing that he would drown also? He said, I am a scorpion, it’s my nature to sting.”

Enter a Hindu Holy Man…

Thanks for everything!

Anonymous said...

wow
book of james
that makes great sense
my thoughts are of this, too
it is in our nature to sting
we can be moved to receive a new nature that comes by Love
that is an amazing parable
book of james
i am going to be thinking about the two posts as a whole all night
God is love. There is one God. God is love.

missie said...

There are a million ways to interpret and consider this story, and I have really enjoyed reading what you and the other readers have said about it. It is definitely something I will spend some time thinking about.

Anonymous said...

I do think it is our nature to love. We were made inthe image of God. We may not be able to love as unconditionally as He does but I do think it is our nature to love.
~Mirissa

Christopher B said...

Its strange how in retrospect, hate is something that you never really WANT. Nobody WANTS to hate. We all want to be loved. Even after someone stabs you in the back, takes your roll in a play, or starts getting into narcotics, dont give up on loving them.

God bless the VT families and students, and may we take away from this horrible event a reminder of the importance of loving the less popular and hurting. We're here on this planet.

Anonymous said...

hmm, i disagree... because yes, we are to love despite what others do to us... & that kind of love, that keeps loving regardless of response from others, is from Jesus. it is not our nature as human beings to love. we're selfish beings, and it is only natural for us to love if we are loved back. to love others even if they hate you or treat you wrongly does not make sense when you think about it. but, God's wisdom is that we love people as we love ourselves. that's not something natural to man. interesting...

themockingbyrd said...

Perhaps it isn't so much in our blood to love other people, defining love as unselfish care for that person, but rather it is in our blood to enter friendships or romance with other humans, and as such, we get stung.

I've been thinking about this again, and aside from the facet of self-preservation Mr. Malcom mentioned, I don't think self-preservation is necessarily part of the equation.

Our love for other people is supposed to be sacrifical and selfless, and outside of preserving yourself to better help others, there is no point in self-preservation. We are to "lay our lives down".

This doesn't apply to situations such as that of an abusive spouse, because the abuser is not simply "stinging" they are committing a crime. Loving someone despite the wrongs they commit against you does not involve allowing them to trample you. There is a fundamental difference between emptying oneself, and making oneself a footstool.

runawaygirl said...

It is tought to love those who sting you, but i try to love the people how hate me as much as i can. I know I'm not the ony one that struggles with this.

PorpoiseMuffins said...

Well, turns out you're on the Christian 'watch list' now, Stephen.

I just saw that PluggedIn reviewed Cities in the 'mainstream' section of their magazine and had quite a list of "objectionable content" and an overall warning to parents.

It just shows how unfortunately over-the-top they can be about some of the content they review. Had they realized that Anberlin is sold in Christian bookstores they probably would have reviewed the disc quite differently and recognized figurative language when they heard it. Not to mention all the lyrics they took out of context.

Why do people have to further damage the reputation of the church like this and pit believers against each other?

Anyway, here is the "Objectional Content" bit from the review:

"The unclear line "Wish your drinking would hurry and kill you" is mean-spirited. Disillusionment and pain are joined by obscure references to needles, suicide and "guilty lovers" ("Godspeed"). Despite ending with "there's hope," "Hello Alone" majors in loneliness and despair ("Depression is the unholy ghost ... I've got the gun/all I need is 10 cents for the bullet/I feel helpless"). Amid talk of raging inner demons, "Reclusion" contains strange metaphors about killing others and strangling lovers.

Impressive artistry, but Anberlin's murky lyrics and pronounced dark side could send a dangerous message to teens on the edge. A smattering of pro-social sentiments aside, this former tourmate of Fall Out Boy and My Chemical Romance echoes the futility of those bands."

Book of James said...

The world is filled with opinions and it appears that Plugged in is not so plugged in. Anything more than a cursory surface level analysis would not serve their target audience. It does require a deeper and more open minded analysis to see the beauty, soul, and Love in the Cities CD.

This is why context is so important. Pluggedin Magazine is a product of "Focus on the Family". An overtly evangelical Christian based ministry of James C. Dobson. As far as the organization goes they seem to be interested in looking out for and protecting the less developed and experienced in our society (children).

Unfortunately they do not post their current magazine music review content until it is a month old. So those that do not subscribe will have to wait to protect their Children. ;-)

www.pluggedinonline.com

The following recent cover article from CCM magazine should shed some light not only on the band but on Christian’s positions.

http://www.ccmcom.com/news/stories/11538205/page1/

I personally find the CCM article to be enlightening and helpful in understanding the philosophical and psychological positions and perspectives in Christian’s blog. It helps me to see things from a perspective that I would not normally be exposed to. For that I am grateful.

If there is one thing that we all should understand, there is a huge difference between Character and Reputation. As Horace Mann put it:

“Character is what God and the angels know of us;
reputation is what men and women think of us.”

Felling Stung?

Regardless of whether you are a follower of Christ or not, everything I have ever wanted to say about love seems to be contained in 1 Corinthians Chapter 13.

Cheers

Stephanie*Michelle said...

I like this post a lot. Love should be something we fight for, even when it's painful. I have been thinking, how easy it is for people to be acquaintances, and how hard it is to actually be a friend. Acquaintances are fun, and there is no commitment involved, but friendship requires commitment, sacrifice and love. Sometimes, i think love is a lose-lose situation. If you don't love, you are either hateful or complacent, which are both destructive qualities. Having no love for others makes life pointeless. But when you love, you get hurt. I believe it is better to love and get hurt, than to never love and never really live... just some thoughts...


"in the absence of love, there is nothing worth fighting for"-elijah wood

Patricia said...

Thank you so much, Stephen. For everything.

Ashleigh said...

Hey Stephen.
I am terribly sorry if this is the wrong avenue or if I am out of line posting this on your blog, feel free to delete it and ignore me, whatever you like. I just dont know where else to ask, where I'll actually get an answer..
Anberlin/Copeland show, June 6, The Studio in Auckland, NZ. Why was it cancelled? A lot of us were planning to go, and it was meant to be my substitute 18th. I was really looking forward to it and hoping to be able to talk to you, as a real person, not the anberlin frontman, at the show..
Again, extremely sorry for posting on your personal blog, but I cant seem to get an answer any other way. Thanks in advance, God bless, Ashleigh

Twenty-six isn't enough said...

I'm heading to Kenya in August and this is my first overseas missions trip, do you have any advice?

Clarissa said...

I've done this before with someone I've loved very much--for many years--and I agree, it's definitely hard... forgiveness and love go together, and for someone who's loved someone so deep, up to now I can't believe I could even love this much despite the difficulty. I mean, the guy stung me so bad, so many times, but I don't even know why and how I have the guts to forgive him... because of love, maybe? I don't know... I guess nobody knows the exact reason why.

(Oh yeah, Stephen, do you know Neil Gaiman? You should check him out. He has a blog too, he kind of reminds me of you when you write.)

http://www.neilgaiman.com/journal/

-Clarissa
(yes, I'm the one who sent you that very LONG email. and you didn't reply! but that's okay ^^)

Godbless you.

Jon said...

Very thought provoking. However, I think its also important to realize that love is only part of our nature. The biggest part happens to be sin.

Yvonne said...

in reply to purpoisemuffins,
wow i can't believe plugged in gave that review for anberlin's music! that's so shallow! I'm disapointed. i read their reviews for movies and i find those to be pretty accurate.

laurafee said...

oh, that was brilliant.

you are very inspiring... please keep up the great writing.

laurafee said...

and in response to Jon... true, our nature is sin, but God has called us to love. follow the Holy Spirit. if you are centered and aligned with the Lord's will and wholly focused on Him, love will be your nature. love will always be your nature when walking in the Spirit.

SaRz said...

beautifully challenging.

as a person with a physical disability I can see myself as both the man and the scorpion.. keen to help others, regardless, on some days. but on other days wanting to hurt people because of their lack of acceptance to those obviously "different."

this post touched a few nerves, and whilst it felt uncomfortable, is something I need to keep practicing daily.

thank you :)

Anonymous said...

The Bible says that a man who claims to love God, but hates his brother is a liar. It also compares hatred to murder.
There are people that it's so difficult to love, especially after what they have put you and your loved ones through, but God will give the grace we need.

Story of a Girl said...

why should i give up my nature to love just because it is the nature of the scorpion to sting?" in spite of those who may sting you remain in what you know to be your nature. love.

wow, this was so helpful. Here I am a year and a half later, writing a blog on forgiving and this just hit the spot. Thanks for posting on this

Claudia said...

Hey, Stephen. I'm currently reading through all of your posts, and wow, this one is beautiful. Really something I needed to hear now, thankyou.