Love is a really difficult subject to write about. It’s difficult because we all have different views of what love is, however Jesus was an amazing example of what it means to truly love because He was the truest love.
The world has a view of what love looks like. We feel like loving people means choosing the “right” side, or what we think is the right side. I think in life there is always going to be a side to choose, in the world there will always be God vs. the Enemy, and we will need to choose whom we are going to follow. I love how Jesus said that the only One who is good is God. We need to keep choosing God.
Unkind words are often spoken in an effort to “reprimand” the “unloveable.” Just because someone gets offended doesn’t mean they are unloving. Just because they have a moment of pain doesn’t mean they are unloving. It never makes sense to me someone who preaches love by hurting others, whether it be with their words or their actions. I think the biggest test of our faith, and our hypocrisy, will always be how we respond to people whether they be friend or foe.
We need to understand that the pursuit of justice doesn’t mean we are loving. Love goes so much deeper than pursuing justice. Yes, it is a loving act to protect people, but that doesn’t mean we always do it in loving ways or in ways that are God honoring. In one of my college classes the instructor was talking about the difference between ethics and religion. She was talking about how you can be an ethical person without religion, which I believe is very true. She then said the ONE thing that separates ethics from religion is that with religion you need to do everything in a loving way.
Someone can have ethics without being loving. As a follower of Christ it is so important that we do everything in love, everything.
We need to understand it’s really easy to love people who fight for the same causes we fight for, and who believe in the things we believe in. However, it’s not so easy to agree to disagree, even if what we are fighting for might be ethical we might not be fighting for it in a loving way. Just because someone utters the word LOVE doesn’t mean a thing.
The Bible says they will know us by our love:
- We are different because we love our enemies.
- We are different because we do not condemn or judge other people.
- We are different because we love the people that the “lovers” of this world say we should bring down.
- Look at how people treat their “enemies.”
Love is an action as pointed out in Luke chapter 6.
Luke Chapter 6:32-36
“If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.
It’s amazing to think that the capacity to love is not based on whether or not the person is being nice to us, or whether or not someone seems unlovable. It is completely in our our control to love or not to love someone else. We do not need to worry about whether or not they deserve to be loved. I am so glad God didn’t look to me and base His love for me off of my behavior towards Him, or other people. I know I am not perfect, and I know that my actions disappoint God sometimes, I think we are fooling ourselves if we believe that God isn’t grieved by the some of the actions that we take, or the choices that we make. But His love for all of us is unending. His heart is grieved by our foolish actions because He loves us.
Lets not confuse ethics with love.
Lets not confuse our conditional love with the truest love.
The truest love is the kind of love that lays down their life for a friend, or the kind of love that loves their enemy, and the kind that turns the other cheek. The kind of love that washes the feet of those whom He is serving. The kind of love that dies an unfair death just so that we can be saved from living a life eternally separated from Him. The kind of love that Jesus showed, and the kind of love that God is.
If you go onto read Luke Chapter 6 Jesus also judging others, a tree and it’s fruit, the wise and foolish builders. It is definitely worth the read today.
P.S. My gift to you today is a printable scripture image of 1 John 4:7. Click here to download: 1 John 4:7 Scripture Image Download
P.P.S. Speaking of LOVE, my friend Amber is releasing a beautiful new book called Dynamite Love. I was able to review an advance copy of the book and I will say it is truly inspiring! You can pre-order at a discounted price of $2.99. The official book release will be on February 1, 2017 and the price will go up to $4.99. So preorder today and save some money and be encouraged! More About the Book from Amazon: In DYNAMITE LOVE, Amber shares how encountering God’s powerful love, completely transformed her life. The love of Christ lit a fire in her heart and she is on a mission to see everyone experince that same explosive power. Through humor, personal stories and biblical insight, Amber invites you to see yourself as “the one God loves.” DYNAMITE LOVE takes you on a journey of discovering a life passion and purpose as you learn the secret to loving well. The limitless love of God will detonate a sleeping charge in your heart that has the power to transform not only your life but the community, city and country in which you live.
Love is selfless and it is constantly pursuing ways to bridge the gap of disconnection in the world. Love brings freedom, not only to us, but also to those around us. When we are walking in love we desire the best for people. In this four week mini Bible Study come and explore what unconditional love looks like in your life today.