By Elaine Baldwin| @elainehbaldwin
Make love the principle thing.
(This post is an excerpt from my to be published book, “The Art of Loving One Another.” It challenges me once again to keep truth and love wrapped tightly together in all I think, do and say.)
John 13:34 & 35 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another. John 13:34 & 35
Love trumps everything! It trumps gender and ethnic diversity. It trumps cultural differences. It trumps religious preferences. It even trumps political affiliations. Do I dare say that in an election year?
We’ve gotten so consumed with being right that we’ve forgotten about being in love.
That’s right! We are supposed to be in love with each other. Born again disciples of Jesus Christ are supposed to love other born again disciples of Jesus Christ the same way He loved us.
Christ’s love trumps all! ALL! I know it’s not polite to yell (all caps), but we’ve got to get this right and soon.
That means the Baptist crowd down the street that is singing out of hymnals should trot on down to the Independent church across town, join in with their band and raise their voices to a common Savior. And the Mega church up town that only has “church” on Sunday morning might want to send a worship team once a month to the little Methodist church just outside of town to assist in their Sunday night teaching service.
Whew! Wouldn’t all that turn a staunch old religious community upside down? There might even be some disciple sightings along the way.
I am picking on these groups because I’ve worshiped with all of them and lived to tell about it. My point is the Body of Christ is fractured into all these sub-groups because, in large part, we are not in love with one another. The sick and dying world around us can’t tell a true disciple of Jesus Christ from a religious bigot because we are not in love with one another. We need to face that fact head on and turn the tide around.
It’s not the purpose of this book to get into discussions of religious preference. And I am not degrading the importance of such discussions. I have very strong views and convictions on a variety of topics and not necessarily the ones I randomly pointed out here.
All I ask is for you to pick your topic. There’s plenty of controversy to choose from. Better yet, ask God to pick the topic for you and ask yourself, do I love the my brother or sister in Christ who’s view on _________ (you fill in the blank) is different from mine?
I have my filled in blanks and you have yours. Now what do we do about them?
How do we love within and around the filled in blanks?
When we figure out the answers to these questions then men (and women) will know we are Jesus’ disciples and we will bring honor and glory to our Savior instead of grief and sorrow.
Photo By: Margaret Richards | http://richardsandcompany.smugmug.com/