The Green Bean Lesson

18 02 2015

My son hates green beans. Seriously hates them. We have tried everything from threats to bribes to get him to eat them, but he won’t budge. I realize that some will see his profound aversion to green beans as a parenting failure, but it is what it is. He will go out of his way to avoid them. He will tell others that they need to be shunned. He refuses to take them into his mouth or touch them in any way.

Maybe there is a lesson to be learned from the way he hates green beans.

“…a time to love, and a time to hate;” – Ecclesiastes 3:8a

As Christians, we are saved and motivated by love. We learn early that love is the lens through which we need to see others and interact with the world. We are to love the Lord with everything we are, and love our neighbors as ourselves. We know that God is love, so while loving is not always easy, we understand it to be our focus. But a time to hate? It doesn’t seem to fit.

“There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him:” (Proverbs 6:16) There are things that God hates. Hates is a strong word, but there it is. As deep as His love is, there are things that He hates. Pride, lies, violence, wickedness, evil intention, falsehood, and disunity. These are things that provoke a strong reaction in God’s heart. They are things that we should hate as well. As we train our hearts to look like Jesus, we must learn not only to love as He loves, but to hate what He hates.

My Jesus Resolution today is to learn the green bean lesson. Hating something means that I refuse to take it into my heart. I avoid it, walk around it, and go out of my way to keep from touching it or letting it touch me. Hate has its place because it teaches my heart to shun the things that cause God’s heart to grieve. Taking time to both love and hate stretches my heart to rest more fully in the image of Jesus.


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2 responses

18 02 2015
lauracdennis

Thank you for writing your blog and the Bible study materials. My group has studied several of them. We so appreciate the good material! Keep writing them and we will keep studying them.

18 02 2015
Debbra Stephens

Great analogy! Especially love this: “Hate has its place because it teaches my heart to shun the things that cause God’s heart to grieve. Taking time to both love and hate stretches my heart to rest more fully in the image of Jesus.” Thank you for blessing me today with this good word.

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