As marching and protesting roar ahead, my heart becomes heavy. The Bible prophesied that the world would eventually call good evil and evil good. With “Love Trumps Hate” signs plastered everywhere, I cannot help but finding that message to be an incredible misinterpretation of what true, God kind of love is. When I read in 1 Corinthians the definition of love, its characteristics seem to be noticeably absent from those who protest under a perceived banner of love in the past months.
4 Love endures with patience and serenity, love is kind and thoughtful, and is not jealous or envious; love does not brag and is not proud or arrogant. 5 It is not rude; it is not self-seeking, it is not provoked [nor overly sensitive and easily angered]; it does not take into account a wrong endured. 6 It does not rejoice at injustice, but rejoices with the truth [when right and truth prevail]. 7 Love bears all things [regardless of what comes], believes all things [looking for the best in each one], hopes all things [remaining steadfast during difficult times], endures all things [without weakening]. – 1 Corinthians 4-7 AMP
My heart ached especially on Veteran’s Day. A day meant to honor our veterans and their families for the sacrifices they’ve made for you and I. The focus on that day instead shifted to college kids burning our nation’s flag. The amount of animosity and disrespect is heart-wrenching.
A rule my dad taught me very seriously as a child was that no matter who was elected as President in our country that I needed to respect the office…regardless of if I agreed with them or not. The office demands our respect. It is a tough job and one I certainly would never want.
“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing” – Edmund Burke
This is not a fun topic. This is actually a blog I wrote long ago but did not want to post. I didn’t want to be a part of the problem. I refused to fuel the nasty battle of words that feels like it’s suffocating lately. Not only that but as a writer, I refuse to spoil the gift I believe God has given me by using my words as a weapon rather than their original purpose to bless and not curse. I would rather simply BE love in this world through my actions…for actions speak far greater than words.
I urge those of you who consider yourself a Christian to cling to love…not love in the sense that we are just “tolerant”. That’s dangerous. I’m talking about a love that is true, pure and reflects our Heavenly Father. I’m calling out Christians to be an example and to set a new standard for how we love people. To love BIG. To hate sin, but to love the sinner, because guys, that’s what Jesus did. He sat right down with the sinners of all sinners and loved them, looking past their actions or their past and seeing the hearts of man. Meeting them where they were, but not wanting them to stay there. Jesus recognized greatness in them that they were blinded to. Isn’t that how God met you? Right where you were, just as you were. Romans 2:4 says that it’s the goodness and patience of God that brings man to repentance.
God’s kind of love stands for what He stands for even when it’s hard, and especially when it’s not popular. It’s a love like a pillar, strong, grounded, and steadfast. It rejoices when truth prevails. It sees men with God’s lens of perspective. It’s not ashamed. It’s not easily angered and seeks what’s best for others. It means to be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to anger according to James 1:19.
I love the scripture in 1 Peter 3:4 which says, “let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.” You know what’s precious in God’s sight? The beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit. Hmm…now THAT’S refreshing isn’t it? I challenge you to magnify and interject a gentle and quiet spirit into your life. I challenge you to love big in your actions…which includes loving those you don’t like and don’t agree with…because true, God kind of love and grace is an action and a choice, it’s not sloppy and it’s not “tolerant” of every wind of doctrine and belief, but rather it’s intentional and everlasting.
“But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you” – Matthew 5:44
Regardless of how you voted, regardless of what you call yourself, where you’re from, the color of your skin… I may not agree with you or maybe your lifestyle or actions, but I truly do love YOU and I don’t want you to stay living in a place separate from your loving Heavenly Father. You were created for a purpose. 2 Peter 3:9 says that God is not willing that any perish, but that all would come to know Him. I caution you though to be very careful of whom and what you are aligning yourself to in these times, and I’m not referring to politics here.
I am a proud American. I am proud of the foundation this country was built upon. I am thankful for our right to be able to speak and worship freely. However, with rights come responsibilities. How are you stewarding the rights you’ve been given? How are you advancing the kingdom with those rights? Are you loving others with a God kind of love stemming from a gentle and quiet spirit?