1 John 4:7
Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.
We don’t have to give anyone the world. We don’t have to set them free. We don’t have to forgive their sins and heal their hurts. We don’t have to die for them. That is Christ’s work to do. But let us love. Let us be the ones to stand in love when others only offer hate. Let us love the broken and the weak, those different and those the same. Let us love the hard to love and the super sweet, the helpless and the hopeless, the cast-offs and the forgotten. Let us love with fervor and passion and energy. Let us love with actions and the right heart.
From a deep place within us, may our love for others spring forth and manifest itself in visible ways. Because God is the source of our love, and He is the one who enables us to love at all. We toss around that word “love” so easily in our world. But often what we use it to describe is not the real, true love that comes from God and flows into us and then out through us. We say we love this object and that place and those things when what we mean is that we like them and prefer them. But love is dying on a cross. Love is bleeding dry. Love is agony. Love is humiliation. Love is going all the way and giving everything and doing it all for someone else.
What is it that everyone is searching for and aching for and longing for but love. What is it that we’re all so desperate for but that knowledge and that feeling and that sensation that we can hardly even define. And the world presents its imitations. The world offers up a version of love that is only a shell of what the love of God really is. And the world distorts it and perverts it and tries to make it its own, but the only lasting love and the only meaningful love and the only love that can change us and heal us and satisfy us is the pure love that comes from God.
And so when we have that love in our lives, when we’ve experienced that for ourselves, let us then share it with one another. No matter what anyone else ever gives back to us, let us love. No matter what anyone around us does, let us love. No matter who comes along to try to change it or redefine it, let us love. Because when God’s people love with God’s love, it can make a real difference. No matter what else we ever can do or ever will do, first let us love one another.