Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from the heart.—1 PETER 1:22 NIV
A younger sister cared for her older sister who struggled with a debilitating mental illness. The older sister’s actions were often frightening. At times she lashed out in anger; still other times she reverted to childish ramblings.
In spite of her fears, the younger sister felt called to help. Day in and day out she struggled with questions: What happened to my sister? Why is she this way? Could this one day happen to me? How can I go on loving someone who blows up at me one minute and seems calm the next?
If you’ve ever cared for someone with a serious mental illness, you know how frightening it can be. And loving such a person—truly loving—is often tough. God asks us to purify ourselves, that we might have sincere love for one another. The kind He’s referring to is a legitimate one, not offered out of obligation.
Is it really possible to truly love someone with such problems? Can it be sincere…from the deepest places in your heart? Absolutely. Just remember that it has to be the Lord’s brand of love.