In a world that loves to debate and argue theories, being among people that judge others by their actions and intentions would leave cause to believe that love may be on the rapid decline. There are so many groups, cliques, and organizations to divide us. For every idea, there is a doctrine to support it. Everyone is “right,” but is that really what matters most?
The Word of God says giving all your possessions to the poor but not loving is worthless. It also declares that of faith, hope, and love, the greatest of these is LOVE. Why does that seem so hard to do? Homes, churches, and families are experiencing splits at massive numbers because we would rather be right than together. Few people champion for togetherness and fellowship anymore; instead, we put on our priestly robes, corporate suits, and our feminist t-shirts and march for the cause. We like to highlight the wrongs of others. God, heal your people and restore our land. Selah.
What if we decided to celebrate our similarities rather than drive each other to the cross for their shortcomings, flaws, and differences? What if we were had the intent to find things that connect us rather than divide us? What if we could grab anyone’s hand, male or female and regardless of lifestyle, choices, or character flaws they possess, and empathize with them. Not because we agree with all of their choices or even understand the differences, but simply because, as Christians, we should remember that love was what allowed Jesus to die on the cross. It was that same love rose Jesus up from the dead. Love allowed Jesus to choose the flawed disciples, and love gave them power in Christ. Love defended men and women all throughout the Bible, who would have otherwise been put to death or cast out. The Pharisees knew the law, but they had no love; it was that lack that allowed Jesus to be misunderstood. They did not understand how Jesus could seem to forgo the law and simultaneously extend a hand of friendship and fellowship. The Pharisees thought it was unlawful for Jesus to meet the needs of the common people that all left changed, empowered, and able to bear fruit as a result of one love encounter with Jesus.
The challenge for today: lay down your law, and pick up love. Law and love are different. If God intended for them to be the same, He would have made them that way. God gives us these laws so that we know His will, not to use them for our own standards for love. We must stop practicing law where we should be extending love. To reject an offer of love, even to those you feel are not deserving, is to reject God Himself. God is love.
Father, help me to be a walking, living example of your love. Help me to be a conduit of this love every day, without restriction. As I have been loved, I will love. In Jesus’s name, Amen.
1 Corinthians 13:13 - And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
By: Melody Smith