Monday, April 15, 2013

Love each other...sounds simple, right?

Matthew 22: 37 Jesus replied: "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' 38 This is the first and greatest commandment. 39 And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' 40 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments."

Luke 6: 31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

John 15: 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father's commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.

These commands seem so simple at first glance. It's easy to love your neighbor as yourself when you like your neighbor, but do we still keep this command when it is someone we do not particularly care for? It seems like more and more people believe it is okay to say whatever they want about other people. You see it all over social media, along with the repercussions, some with incredibly tragic consequences. When you talk about another person, both good and bad, you need to remind yourself that you are talking about another one of God's creations. None of us are perfect, but God still loves each and every one of us.

I have often said if you learn nothing else from me remember that God loves you, not in our limited, romanticized, human view of love; rather, God loves you more than you can ever know or completely understand. He loves us absolutely and unconditionally. Because God loves you, you are to love others as well: the people you like, don't like, and everyone in between. This has especially been weighing on me as I meet and hear stories about children, youth, and even adults who believe they are unloved and unlovable. Moreover, the extent of the things people (Christians included) are open to saying and doing to each other to intentionally cause harm to another person is troubling to say the least. Bullying and mistreating others is viewed as entertaining instead of a serious problem. This cannot continue. If you truly understand that God loves you, and His joy resides within us, then you must love others in the same way. When you "love your neighbor as yourself" and "Love each other as I (Christ) have loved you," then you honor Jesus and His name is glorified.

Live right. Treat others with respect. Walk in the Joy of Jesus Christ. Above all else, know to your very core that God loves you, and nothing can ever change that. Be blessed, my friends!