Posts tagged ‘love’

Living Love Or Seeing Sin

God is love. So we are told to “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind. And love your neighbor as you love yourself” (Luke 10:27 God’s Word Translation©).

This means we are to feed the hungry, give water to the thirsty, clothe the naked, visit those who are sick or in jail (Matthew 25:34-36), and to protect the widow and the orphan (James 1:27). Nowhere does it say ignore and slander those trapped in sin. Nowhere is there a condition on who to help. Yet too often church people heap contempt on prostitutes, LGBTQ people, the homeless, anyone who doesn’t agree with our views on religion and politics, and anyone else who “gets in our way”.

No, we hate the sinners more than we hate the sin! Why? Because “all have sinned” (Romans 3:23), including us. If we could hate sin we would convict ourselves, and we don’t. We don’t have time. We spend all our time condemning others and playing God instead of loving like God.

Besides, love costs too much. It will cost us our pride, our personal convenience, and even our life. Condemning others seems the easier way, but the cost of that is eternal punishment (Romans 6:23)!

Jesus did not die on the cross so you could decide whom you will love! Or so you can justify your gossip and slander.

This strikes close to home these days. We have grandchildren who have chosen the road of sinfulness paved with loose living, contempt for parents, lying and anger, and more. However, we still love them with all our hearts.

If we saw sinners as our children and grandchildren, dearly loved, we could hate what sin does to people, but we could also pray for them with tears, show the face of love and make opportunities to express the love of God to people trapped in sin. We would sacrifice ourselves to be a light in the world and not flame-throwers.

We are not the only ones experiencing this. What I see in our present circumstances is a powerful way to talk about what will change people’s lives, namely, the love of God which Jesus showed to death (and life) and which now lives through us humbled by our own pain, and our faith that refuses to give up on anyone.

It was Gandhi that brought this saying to common use – it is not found in the Bible.

The Lord isn’t slow to do what he promised, as some people think. Rather, he is patient for your sake. He doesn’t want to destroy anyone but wants all people to have an opportunity to turn to him and change the way they think and act” (2 Peter 3:9 God’s Word Translation©).

A World of Gods

There is a common story across religions of humans wanting to be gods resulting in rebellion, pride and division. Still today there are people who claim to be spiritual, but live with a lust for personal power, not service. They show no respect to anyone (despite deceptive words to the contrary) and use personal perspective to judge everything and everybody. And they are so wrapped up in their infinite wisdom and unshakable “rightness” they have no room for empathy or humility, despite verbal claims of loyalty to these principles.

So, after decades of experience (including much formal training) and a history of victimization based on my race, gender, religious affiliation and economic status I have something to say:

Praying during worship in Tanzania

I chose, and still choose, heavenly love. I remain loyal to The Almighty, not to any religious institution, dogma or doctrine. Service to Creator and creation costs everything, but I would rather be tormented as a child of The One Who Made me than have an inflated public image of importance and power. I will continue to confirm the accuracy of my observations of others before I complain about, or condemn, people. Reconciliation with the Family who share this Earth is far better than humiliating others for personal advancement or “proving” superiority of personal ideology. To alter a famous line from a famous poem (“Paradise Lost”), “I would rather be the lowliest servant in the household of The Divine One than a governor in the world of evil and hate.”

I pray I would start hearing people tell me stories of humble collegiality instead of betrayal and self-aggrandizement. I would be filled with a soul-joy if I met more people who thought social responsibility was a higher ideal than personal rights and opinions.

The life I have chosen is to follow, without religious trappings, the Jesus of the Bible: Saviour and Only Judge.

True Evidence

Many (most?) Christians express confidence in their loyalty to how they worship God, the congregation they belong to or the denomination they subscribe to or their self-righteous declaration of freedom from all gatherings of Believers. Read more…

Everyone Will Know

Many (most?) Christians express confidence in their loyalty to how they worship God, the congregation they belong to or the denomination they subscribe to or their self-righteous declaration of freedom from all gatherings of believers. Read more…

Love and Determine

 

Over the last while I have observed something. Even a single book of the Bible is enough to live by. Read more…

Big Love from Small Faith

Well, I haven’t written anything for a long time. And before that my posts have been meagre in number. Read more…

Love Control 2

Original sin, which I call The Eden Syndrome, pervades our world and personal lives to the point of overwhelming us. Read more…

Love Control 1

Friday night, on the way to work, I heard a small part of a Joyce Meyer talk on the radio. What grabbed me was this: God wants us to control self and love others, but we want to love ourselves and control others. Read more…

Your Heart Is in Your Hands

13
A joyful heart makes a cheerful face,
    but with a heartache comes depression.
14
The mind of a person who has understanding searches for knowledge,
    but the mouths of fools feed on stupidity.
15
proverbs-smiling-faces_0Every day is a terrible day for a miserable person,
    but a cheerful heart has a continual feast.
16
Better to have a little with the fear of the Lord
    than great treasure and turmoil.
17
Better to have a dish of vegetables where there is love
    than juicy steaks where there is hate.
18
A hothead stirs up a fight,
    but one who holds his temper calms disputes. Read more…

Love and Emotion

Love, heavenly love, the love which Jesus commands us to love, is not an emotion. Read more…