Your broken man is loved by God and needs to be loved by you. Even though he keeps failing.
Jesus set this example:
…but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8
The word used for sinners in this verse means ‘missing the mark’, like an archer with bad aim. He takes the shot but keeps missing.
Let me apply this verse for women who have disconnected men.
…but ladies, show your love for your disconnected man even though he keeps missing. Keep pointing yourself and him to Jesus and His soul-healing death.
Your man keeps drawing his bow and missing your heart. He keeps hitting your nerves. His errant arrows keep disappointing you. Some of your men don’t even put the arrow to the string – they stopped trying. You were ready to cheer in the stands only to be embarrassed when he walked off the field.
This is where Jesus finds us all. People who miss the mark of His righteousness. We never hit the target. He continues to love us all the way to the ultimate sacrifice, His own death.
I will never deny that your man is broken and sinful. He’s missing the mark with you, your children, and most of all with his Creator. He grieves God every day – even more than he crushes your heart. It’s impossible to love someone who never hits the mark – but with God, all things are possible.
How can you obtain the strength to love an unlovable man? From where will you draw love, when your well is dry? How can you give love when you don’t feel you’ve received any?
An Old Testament command gives us a clue as to how we can love a sinner.
When a stranger sojourns with you in your land, you shall not do him wrong. You shall treat the stranger who sojourns with you as the native among you, and you shall love him as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt: I am the Lord your God. Leviticus 19:3
God tells Israel to love strangers and gives the hint as to how. One word describes how the Israelites were supposed to see a stranger (a non-Israelite). They were to identify with him.
Remembering their days in Egypt, the bondage, the slave work, the beatings, the abuse, building for someone else’s use and glory, being deprived of basic rights, and everything else that goes with slavery; God said would help them love the stranger.
In other words – if we will humbly remember that God loved us when we were sinners, slaves, rebels, and beggars, we will find the strength to love those who are still there. Still strangers in our land. The New Testament equal is found in Titus.
For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. Titus 2:3-7
We were all once slaves to incredible sinfulness. Strangers to the grace of God. Some of us wander off and seem to get lost back in that foreign land. Some wander into our land of grace as strangers. We are to love them because they are just like we once were.
Your broken man is that stranger. He’s disconnected from you, from God, from everyone. He looks happy and productive but remains a lonely foreigner.
Your love, identifying with his brokenness, pitying his cluelessness, reaching out to his lostness, is what God wants you to do. Regardless if it has any effect. There were no conditions on God’s command to love the stranger. There are no conditions on God’s love for you. There should be no conditions on your love for your disconnected man.