OK, I’m not much of a cook, but when my wife was really busy and under the weather, we got to eat my cooking for dinner. Which meant a very limited menu which invariably included the grilled cheese option. Now, when I would prepare that gourmet specialty, I would reach for my trusty skillet – the one that’s coated with Teflon. You don’t have to be a headliner on the Food Channel to know that life is a lot easier when you have a pan that things don’t stick to; they just sort of slide right off.
I’m Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about “Teflon Love.”
Most churches, most families, most workplaces could use some Teflon, don’t you think? I mean I’m talking people who don’t let things stick to them; they just let them slide right off. I hope you are one or that you want to become one!
The Apostle Peter is talking about that kind of relationships in our word for today from the Word of God. It’s in 1 Peter 4:8. He simply says, “Above all…” Whoa! Now, wait a minute! What follows you know is going to be the most important point. “Above all, love each other deeply.” Why? He says, “Because love covers a multitude of sins.” He was talking to people who were undergoing a lot of pressure, a lot of pain for their commitment to Jesus Christ. The last thing they needed was grief from each other! So he recommends sort of a Teflon approach to relationships: love people enough that your love will enable you to overlook their wrongdoings.
Overlooking love – that’s Teflon love! “Un-love” keeps score all the time; it marks down every time it gets offended or wounded, it harbors, and it never forgets an offense. If you’re that kind of person in your relationships, then when someone crosses you, you don’t let it go, you let it grow.
But Jesus-style love has no scorecard. If you love as He’s told us to, then you simply refuse to store the negatives from other people or about other people. You’re Teflon, and the negatives don’t stick to you. They slide off.
Could it be that you’ve been allowing hard feelings toward someone you know to start growing in you? Is there some resentment, some anger, some bitterness that you’ve allowed to stick to your soul toward someone in your family; maybe even your mate or your child or your parent? Or maybe it’s hard feelings toward someone at church, or where you work, in that ministry you’re involved with. The Bible calls it a “root of bitterness” and says what will happen if you allow it to grow in you much longer. It says, “It will cause trouble and defile many” (Hebrews 12:15).
If there’s any unforgiveness in your heart, hear your Lord’s word, “Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another.” You may say, “Yeah, but what about the way they treated me?” God shoots down all our “yeah buts” with His next sentence, “Forgive as the Lord forgave you” (Colossians 3:13). Wow! You don’t treat people as they’ve treated you. No, our example is to treat them as Jesus has treated you!
So ask your Lord for a dose of His love that will cover rather than harbor the wrongs against you. Love enough to cover not just a few of them, but like it says, a multitude of sins.
See, things don’t stick to someone who has God’s Teflon love. They slide off!